Home The Washington Diplomat September 2018 Events – September 2018

Events – September 2018












Through Sept. 3

World on the Horizon: Swahili Arts Across the Indian Ocean

The first major traveling exhibition dedicated to the arts of the Swahili coast reveals the diverse interchanges that break down barriers between Africa and Asia in a space that physically connects the Smithsonian’s African and Asian art museums. The Swahili coast, where East Africa meets the Indian Ocean, has long been a significant cultural, diplomatic and commercial intersection for Africa, Asia and Europe for millennia. “World on the Horizon” offers audiences an unprecedented opportunity to view over 160 artworks brought together from public and private collections from four continents.

National Museum of African Art


Through Sept. 4

Expanding Spacetime: Works by Chae Eun Rhee and Sky Kim

The vivid and evocative paintings of Chae Eun Rhee and Sky Kim ask viewers to imagine how the human mind and body transcend the constraints of time and space. As female artists who have each lived in Korea and the United States, Rhee and Kim employ fundamentally different visual styles and subjects, but both aspire to integrate a sense of spirituality into their work by crossing traditional boundaries between imagination and reality. By examining what makes us who we are, from the cellular to the unconscious, both ask viewers to visualize their own inner worlds that are deeply personal, rarely seen and startling to behold.

Korean Cultural Center


Sept. 4 to Dec. 16

Without Provenance: The Making of Contemporary Antiquity

Artist Jim Sanborn provides a critique of the contemporary art market that sells stolen or forged antiquities. The artist’s imagined world, which would make complete sense to an ancient Roman, is one wherein the skilled artist-craftsmen of contemporary Cambodia (who we now call forgers and who muddle the art market) would be understood to be what they are: gifted copyists. Their works would be bought for what they are — copies — and valued for what they offer: powerful evocations of the artistic genius of Khmer art of the distant past.

American University Museum


Sept. 5 to 30

Passages and Borders

Artist Rosa Vera travels between two cultures — Latin American and North American — to explore issues of multiculturalism, journeys and family memories.

Touchstone Gallery


Sept. 7 to 29

Inner Monologue

This new group exhibition features more than 30 ceramic sculpture works by Korean artists Ahrong Kim, Gunyoung Kim and Kyungmin Park, who explore the world of internal emotion and thought expressed through a visceral, tactile medium. Each artist immigrated to the United States from Korea in their 20s and were shaped creatively by the experience of communicating in a foreign language. This challenge of translating one’s inner monologue into external messages led to their artistic interest in the human body and facial expressions as psychological indicators. As keen observers of such non-verbal cues, they found the experience materialized in and affected their work, which emphasizes self-awareness and self-reflection as much as interpretation of others.

Korean Cultural Center


Sept. 8 to September 2019

Shaping Clay in Ancient Iran

Potters in ancient Iran were fascinated by the long-beaked waterfowl and rams with curled horns around them. This exhibition of ceramics produced in northwestern Iran highlights animal-shaped vessels as well as jars and bowls decorated with animal figures.

Arthur M. Sackler Gallery


Through Sept. 9

Marking the Infinite: Contemporary Women Artists from Aboriginal Australia

Approximately 60 works, drawn from the collection of Miami-based collectors and philanthropists Debra and Dennis Scholl, spotlight nine leading Aboriginal Australian women artists. The artists are from remote Aboriginal communities across Australia, and the subjects of their art are broad, yet each work is an attempt to grapple with fundamental questions of existence, asking us to slow down and pay attention to the natural world.

The Phillips Collection


Sept. 9 to Dec. 31

Corot: Women

Camille Corot is best known as the great master of landscape painting in the 19th century. His figure paintings constitute a much smaller, less well-known portion of his oeuvre, but arguably are of equal importance to the history of art. Dressed in rustic Italian costume or stretched nude on a grassy plain, Corot’s women read, dream, and gaze, conveying a mysterious sense of inner life. His sophisticated use of color and his deft, delicate touch applied to the female form resulted in pictures of quiet majesty.

National Gallery of Art


Sept. 12 to Oct. 14

If I Forget

This observant, political-but-personal family drama set in 2000 centers on the dynamics of a modern Jewish family in D.C.’s Tenleytown neighborhood. Brought together by their elderly father’s 75th birthday, the adult children of the Fischer family squabble over what to do with their long-held and now lucrative 14th Street property, igniting debates on religion, politics and history. Tickets are $29 to $90.

Studio Theatre


Sept. 14 to Jan. 31, 2019

Vested Values

“Vested Values,” a selection comprising more than 40 works of various Mexican contemporary artists, explores the representation of nature and its sociocultural environment. Each of the works reveals how particular methods of production, implementation and execution of contemporary art can offer a complex impression of the diverse elements that define a society, which in turn promotes a continuous dialogue on both experience and perception. Each of the works originates through an arrangement with Mexico’s Tax Administration Service that allows Mexican artists to pay their taxes with their artworks. Today, artists can pay their income tax using media that ranges from digital art to photography.

Mexican Cultural Institute


Through Sept. 16

Baselitz: Six Decades

The first major U.S. retrospective in more than 20 years of Georg Baselitz, one of Germany’s greatest living artists, marks the artist’s 80th birthday. With more than 100 works, including iconic paintings, works on paper, and wood and bronze sculptures, highlighting every phase of Baselitz’s six-decade career from the 1950s to today, this milestone exhibition features work never before seen in the U.S. and cements Baselitz’s reputation as one of the most original and inventive figurative artists of his generation.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden


Through Sept. 16

Heavy Metal – Women to Watch 2018

Over 50 works made from silver, copper, bronze, pewter, aluminum and more highlight contemporary women artists working with a variety of metals and techniques to create pieces such as wall-size installations, exquisite jewelry and reinventions of familiar objects.

National Museum of Women in the Arts


Sept. 16 to Jan. 13

Rachel Whiteread

As the first comprehensive survey of the work of British sculptor Rachel Whiteread, this exhibition brings together some 100 objects from the course of the artist’s 30-year career, including drawings, photographs, architecture-scaled sculptures, archival materials, documentary materials on public projects and several new works on view for the first time. Throughout her celebrated career, Whiteread has effectively recast the memories of these locations and objects to chart the seismic changes in how we live, from the late 20th century and into the 21st.

National Gallery of Art


Through Sept. 27

Floating Islands: Ceramic Ikebana Vessels

Explore how a beloved Japanese tradition is being reinterpreted and inherited in the United States with ceramic ikebana vessels created by some of the most talented potters working within the U.S. today. Several of the artists have lived and studied in pottery towns in Japan such as Bizen, Mashiko and Shigaraki, where they were able to hone their art and bring back methods of making and firing to the United States.

Japan Information & Culture Center


Through Sept. 23

Form and Function: The Genius of the Book

Dive deep into one of the world’s greatest technologies: the book. Discover a history beyond what’s printed on the page, seen in the structure, craftsmanship and beauty of this often-overlooked marvel.

Folger Shakespeare Library


Sept. 27 to Nov. 18

Recovered Memories: Spain and the Support for the American Revolution

“Recovered Memories” showcases Spain’s support for the American colonies prior to and during the Revolutionary War, and also highlights notable Spanish figures whose lives impacted the emerging new country. The exhibit takes the visitor on a chronological journey of Spanish-American relations beginning with Spain’s own Age of Enlightenment during the reign of Charles III, through the times of European and American revolutions, and ending with the technological advancements at the turn of the 20th century.

Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain


Sept. 28 to September 2020

New York Avenue Sculpture Project

Mexico City-based sculptor Betsabeé Romero has been selected as the artist for the fourth iteration of the New York Avenue Sculpture Project, the only public art space featuring changing installations of contemporary works by women artists in Washington, D.C. Organized by the National Museum of Women in the Arts, the New York Avenue Sculpture Project is a collaboration among the museum, the DowntownDC Business Improvement District, the DC Office of Planning and other local agencies. For this site-specific installation, Romero has created four sculptures of carved and painted tires that are assembled into totemic structures and speak to the theme of human migration.

New York Avenue, NW


Sept. 29 to Jan. 21

Japan Modern: Photography from the Gloria Katz and Willard Huyck Collection

Celebrating the Freer|Sackler’s recent acquisition of a major Japanese photography collection, this exhibition features a selection of works by groundbreaking 20th-century photographers. Whether capturing evocative landscapes or the gritty realities of postwar Japan, this presentation focuses on Japanese artists’ search for a sense of place in a rapidly changing country. The images highlight destinations both rural and urban, in styles ranging from powerful social documentary to intensely personal.

Freer Gallery of Art


Sept. 29 to Jan. 21

Japan Modern: Prints in the Age of Photography

When photography arrived in Japan in the mid-19th century, traditional woodblock printmakers were forced to adapt their craft to keep pace with the new medium. This exhibition explores Japanese artists’ reactions to the challenges of modernity, examining the collapse of the traditional woodblock-printmaking industry in the face of the printing press and photography, and then tracing the medium’s resurrection as an art form, through which printmakers recorded scenes of their changing country in striking new ways.

Freer Gallery of Art


Through Oct. 14

Collection of the Art Museum of the Americas

The OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas announces the second in a series of exhibitions accompanying “Collection of the Art Museum of the Americas of the Organization of American States, curated by Adriana Ospina. Initiated five years ago, the project aims to rethink the study of the historical and cultural legacy of the Art Museum of the Americas, beginning with a comprehensive catalogue of the permanent collection. The catalogue highlights key pieces of the AMA art collection, representing fundamental artistic trends that have developed in Latin America, including new figuration, geometric and lyrical abstraction, conceptual art, optical and kinetic art. Over the years, the museum has provided valuable support in the expansion of the academic field of modern and contemporary art of Latin America and the Caribbean in the United States.

OAS Art Museum of the Americas


Through Nov. 12

Mark Bradford: Pickett’s Charge

For his first solo exhibition in D.C., acclaimed artist Mark Bradford debuts a monumental site-specific commission inspired by Paul Philippoteaux’s 1883 cyclorama depicting the Battle of Gettysburg. Covering the curved walls of the Hirshhorn’s Third Level Inner Circle, “Pickett’s Charge” presents 360 degrees of abstracted historical narrative.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden


Through Nov. 25

Bound to Amaze: Inside a Book-Collecting Career

Curator Emerita Krystyna Wasserman assembled NMWA’s collection of more than 1,000 artists’ books over a 30-year period. This focus exhibition celebrates her vision and features 20 notable artists’ books from the museum’s expansive collection.

National Museum of Women in the Arts


Through Nov. 25

Water, Wind, and Waves: Marine Paintings from the Dutch Golden Age

The Dutch rose to greatness from the riches of the sea. During the 17th century, water was central to their economic and naval successes, but was also a source of pleasure and enjoyment. This exhibition explores the deep, multifaceted relationship the Dutch had with the water, including their gratitude for the sea’s bounty and their fear of its sometimes destructive power.

National Gallery of Art


Through Dec. 25

Visionary: Viewpoints on Africa’s Arts

More than 300 works of art from the museum’s permanent collection are on view within this exhibition. Working in media as diverse as wood, ceramics, drawing, jewelry, mixed media, sculpture, painting, photography, printmaking, and video, these works of art reflect the visionary ideas and styles developed by men and women from more than half of Africa’s 55 nations. The installation is organized around seven viewpoints, each of which serve to frame and affect the manner in which African art is experienced.

National Museum of African Art


Through Jan. 6, 2019

Sense of Humor

Humor may be fundamental to human experience, but its expression in painting and sculpture has been limited. Instead, prints, as the most widely distributed medium, and drawings, as the most private, have been the natural vehicles for comic content. Drawn from the National Gallery of Art’s collection, this exhibition celebrates this incredibly rich though easily overlooked tradition through works including Renaissance caricatures, biting English satires, and 20th-century comics.

National Gallery of Art


Through Jan. 6, 2019

Trevor Paglen: Sites Unseen

Trevor Paglen is an award-winning artist whose work blurs the lines between art, science and investigative journalism to construct unfamiliar and at times unsettling ways to see and interpret the world. This is the first exhibition to present Paglen’s early photographic series alongside his recent sculptural objects and new work with artificial intelligence.

Smithsonian American Art Museum


Through Jan. 13, 2019

Fabergé Rediscovered

Designed to delight and surprise, the treasures created by the firm of Carl Fabergé have inspired admiration and intrigue for over a century, both for their remarkable craftsmanship and the captivating stories that surround them. The fascination with Fabergé continues to uncover new discoveries about the storied jeweler to the tsars and his remarkable creations. This exhibit unveils recent research and explore how the 2014 discovery of a long-lost imperial Easter egg prompted new findings about Hillwood’s own collection.

Hillwood Estate, Museum and Gardens


Through Jan. 21, 2019

No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man

Each year in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert, a city of more than 70,000 people rises out of the dust for a single week. During that time, enormous experimental art installations are erected and many are ritually burned to the ground. Cutting-edge artwork created at Burning Man, the annual desert gathering that is one of the most influential events in contemporary art and culture, will be exhibited in the nation’s capital for the first time this spring.

Renwick Gallery



Sept. 26 to 30

TWB Welcomes

The Washington Ballet Artistic Director Julie Kent invites celebrated artists from the dance world to share the stage with TWB. The program, which includes acclaimed highlights from choreographers Alexei Ratmansky and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, as well as iconic masterworks like “Serenade” and “Les Sylphides,”provides a highly curated production that defines ballet as an art form over the last century. Tickets are $25 to $160.

Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater



Sat., Sept. 1, 1:35 p.m.

Jacqueline Woodson at the National Book Festival

Jacqueline Woodson, the 2018-19 National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, will read and sign books at this year’s National Book Festival in Washington, D.C. She is the winner of Sweden’s Astrid ALMA Prize, the largest international children’s and young adult literature award in the world. A presentation on the children’s purple stage will be followed by a book signing.

Washington Convention Center


Wed., Sept. 5, 7 p.m.

Music as a Strategy of Cultural Policy in Nazi Germany

Austrian historian Bernhard Achhorner discusses the role of music as part of the Nazi regime’s propaganda strategy to create and articulate national identity. The event is part of the embassy’s commemoration series to mark one of the darkest moments in Austria’s history, the so-called “Anschluss” of Austria to Nazi-Germany in 1938 and the painful events that followed. To RSVP, visit http://acfdc.org.

Embassy of Austria


Thu., Sept. 6, 6:45 p.m.

Blueprints of Empire: Ancient Rome and America

Was Marcus Aurelius right? Do empires come and go, have their moment and then disappear from history’s stage? In their 2010 book “Power, Ambition, Glory,” Steve Forbes, editor-in-chief of Forbes, and historian and classicist John Prevas examined the rise and fall of ancient empires through an analysis of the political and moral leadership of the rulers who shaped them, with a parallel look at modern CEOs and how they fit into the framework of history. Forbes and Prevas come together to compare these two empires, their similarities and differences, and speculate on what that connection holds for America’s future. Tickets are $45; for information, visit www.smithsonianassociates.org.

National Museum of Natural History


Thu., Sept. 6, 6:45 p.m.

The Many Cultures of Taiwan

Taiwan and its many smaller offshore islands may not be huge in area, but they contain vast history, traditions, cultures and natural attractions. Get ready to explore many of the treats Taiwan has to offer during a single spectacular evening that includes the sounds of the eight-part harmony of the Bunun tribe, the flying fish festival of the aboriginal Tao people, as well as authentic Taiwanese music, food and drinks. Tickets are $45; for information, visit www.smithsonianassociates.org.

S. Dillon Ripley Center


Sat., Sept. 15, 5:30 p.m.

Liv Strömquist at the Small Press Expo

In the international bestseller “Fruit of Knowledge,” celebrated Swedish cartoonist Liv Strömquist traces how different cultures and traditions have shaped women’s health and beyond. In a conversation with Swedish Embassy cultural counselor Linda Zachrison, Strömquist will discuss her work, creative process, activist ethos and more at the Small Press Expo, the premier platform for graphic novelists in the United States.

White Flint Auditorium at Marriott Bethesda North


Wed., Sept. 19, 6 p.m.

The US-Philippines Society and Sentro Rizal Washington DC present a discussion on the Mangyan ancient culture and the Philippine oldest system of writing, Mangyan scripts, dating to the 10th century that are still in use today. The event features “Bamboo Whispers,” a book of the best 100 Mangyan “ambahan” (poem) in two scripts, with translations. A national treasure and registered with UNESCO, an ambahan chant will also be performed. For information, contact info@usphilsociety.org.

Embassy of the Philippines


Thu., Sept. 27, 6:45 p.m.

Conversation: NEA National Heritage Fellows: Manuel Cuevas and Ofelia Esparza

Director of the Smithsonian Latino Center Eduardo Diaz holds a discussion with Manuel Cuevas and Ofelia Esparza, the two artists of Mexican heritage who are the 2018 recipients of the National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship. Born in 1933, Cuevas gained popularity sewing prom dresses in his hometown of Michoacán at the young age of 14. His talents later took him to Hollywood, where he began working with influential designers and artists ranging from Nathan Turk to Elvis Presley. Esparza is a Mexican-American altarista, or altar maker, whose work pays homage and evokes memory of people, events or places through the use of photos, traditional foods, flowers, handmade and found adornments. To RSVP, visit http://www.instituteofmexicodc.org.

Mexican Cultural Institute



 Sat., Sept. 15, 7 p.m.

Wolf Trap Ball

This annual black-tie evening of celebration, dinner and dancing on Wolf Trap’s magnificent Filene Center stage — one of the largest stages in America — is being hosted this year in partnership with the British Embassy. A prominent cross-section of local and national leaders attends the Wolf Trap Ball, including members of the diplomatic corps, Congress, state and local governments, media and philanthropic leaders, and executives from national and international businesses. Tickets start at $750.

Wolf Trap



Thu., Sept. 6, 6:45 p.m.

Recital with Musicologist Ana Alongso-Minutti

While the romance between Chavela Vargas (1919-2012) and Frida Kahlo (1907-54) has been a matter of much speculation, the love and devotion Chavela had for Frida was undeniable. In this presentation, Dr. Ana Alonso-Minutti of the University of New Mexico explores the figure of Frida from the eyes and voice of Chavela Vargas. Defiance, suffering, spirituality, and homoerotic desire inhabit the mythology of Chavela’s Frida. To RSVP, visit http://www.instituteofmexicodc.org.

Mexican Cultural Institute


Sept. 8 to 19

Viva V.E.R.D.I. – The Promised End

Italian composer Giuseppi Verdi’s “dream project” was to compose an opera based on Shakespeare’s “King Lear,” his favorite play and a work whose unique meditation on themes of living and dying with meaning stayed seared into the composer’s consciousness his entire life. He started the project many times, but never completed it. The InSeries opens its season with a wholly original work that seeks to “give Verdi his Lear” by blending the Requiem with a one-woman meditation on “King Lear” that is at once a performance of the play and commentary on it. Tickets are $45.

Source Theatre


Tue., Sept. 18, 4 p.m.

Shoes (1916) with Live Film Score by Alexis Cuadrado

The Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and SPAIN arts & culture present the world premiere and live performance of a new original film score composed by Alexis Cuadrado for the 1916 silent film “Shoes.” The film follows the story of a young woman who struggles to replace her only pair of shoes, which are falling to pieces, while supporting a family of six with a deadbeat father. For information, visit https://shoescuadrado.eventbrite.com.

Georgetown University Copley Formal Lounge


Wed., Sept. 26, 5:45 p.m.

The 100th Anniversary of the Birth of Nelson Mandela

South African cellist Jacques-Pierre Malan returns to the Embassy Series with an outstanding contingent of South African performers in a special program to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s birth. Tickets are $95, including buffet, wine and valet parking; for information, visit www.embassyseries.org.

Embassy of South Africa



Through Sept. 2

The Bridges of Madison Country

A sweeping romance about the roads we travel, the doors we open and the bridges we dare to cross, this 2014 Tony Award-winner for Best Score and Orchestrations captures the lyrical expanse of America’s heartland and the yearning entangled in the eternal question of “what if?” Tickets are $55.

Andrew Keegan Theatre


Through Sept. 2

Melancholy Play: A Contemporary Farce

Tilly, a bank teller, is consumed by a melancholy so exquisite that everyone she meets becomes infatuated with her. But when Tilly inexplicably discovers happiness, her joy wreaks havoc on the lives of her paramours. Please call for ticket information.

Constellation Theatre Company at The Source


Sept. 3 to 30


The squabbling editorial assistants at one of New York’s most prestigious magazines are all chasing the same dream: a starry life of letters and a book deal before they turn 30. When an ordinary day at the office suddenly becomes a living nightmare, two survivors transform the experience into career-making stories. Which one of them will get to own the truth? Call for ticket information.

Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company


Sept. 4 to 23


Rampant ambition and minds unhinged: Shakespeare’s murderous tragedy is seen anew here, set in London’s famous Bedlam asylum for a groundbreaking production integrating period music into a famous variation of the play. Tickets are $27 to $79.

Folger Theatre


Sept. 6 to Oct. 7

Like Water for Chocolate

Tita, the youngest of three sisters, falls in love with Pedro, but her mother forbids Tita to marry him. When Pedro marries the oldest sister, Rosaura, the three of them must live in the same house. To avoid temptation, Tita turns to cooking. Soon her delicacies provoke tears, laughter, burning desire and more to those who partake (Spanish with English surtitles). Tickets are $48.

GALA Hispanic Theatre


Sept. 6 to Oct. 14

Turn Me Loose

This intimate and no-holds barred drama chronicles Dick Gregory’s rise as the first Black comedian to expose audiences to racial comedy. In confronting bigotry head-on with biting humor and charm, Gregory turned his activism into an art form, risking his own safety at each performance. Tickets are $40 to $95.

Arena Stage


Sept. 12 to 30

Theater J: The Pianist of Willesden Lane

Set in Vienna in 1938 and London during the Blitzkrieg, “The Pianist of Willesden Lane” tells the true and inspiring story of Lisa Jura, a young Jewish pianist whose dream of making her concert debut at the storied Musikverein concert hall is dashed by the onset of World War II. Despite devastating personal loss, her music enables Jura to endure and pursue her dreams. Performed by Jura’s daughter, Grammy-nominated pianist Mona Golabek, “The Pianist of Willesden Lane” combines enthralling story telling with breathtaking live performances of Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Rachmaninoff and more. Tickets are $44 to $74. A special concert and reading will also be held Thu., Sept. 6, at 7 p.m. at the Embassy of Austria (for information, visit http://acfdc.org).

Kennedy Center Family Theater


Sept. 20 to 23

Svanda Theatre: Four Plays from Prague

The prestigious Czech company Svanda Theatre performs “The Good and the True,” which weaves together testimonies of two Auschwitz survivors who led similarly extraordinary lives, but never actually met; “Pankrác ’45,” based on the real-life incarceration of five women in the Pankrác Prison during a time of post-WWII national cleansing in Czechoslovakia; and the one-act plays “Protest” and “The Debt” — as part of the celebrations surrounding the 100th anniversary of Czech independence. For ticket information, visit https://performingarts.georgetown.edu/theater-and-performance-studies-season.

Georgetown University Davis Performing Arts Center


Mon., Sept. 17, 6:30 p.m.

Dominio Público (Public Space)

Award-winning Spanish artist Roger Bernat presents the U.S. premiere of “Dominio Público,” a unique participatory theater spectacle that aims to map societal structures. For information, visit www.spainculture.us/city/washington-dc/.

Georgetown University Red Square


Through Sept. 23


Set in 1860s Italy, this gorgeous musical ignites a fiery love triangle when a handsome army captain is transferred to a remote military outpost and into the blinding infatuation of Fosca, the ailing cousin of his superior. Fosca’s fervent longing draws him in as it threatens to upend his career in an exhilarating tangle of obsession, desire, madness and above all, passion. Please call for ticket information.

Signature Theatre


Sept. 25 to Oct. 28

The Comedy of Errors

Two sets of twins, each with the same name — what could go wrong? Everything, apparently. Leave logic behind and delight in the confusion of Shakespeare’s beloved comedy, where servants misplace their masters, wives overlook their husbands and sons forget their fathers. Call for ticket information.

Shakespeare Theatre Company