Home The Washington Diplomat February 2019 Events – February 2019

Events – February 2019












Feb. 6 to March 29

Open to Interpretation

Artist Claudia Samper focuses on birds as her subject matter, closely observing them and growing to appreciate their apparent freedom, inclination to explore, early rising habits, dedication to their young, lyrical songs and their colorful plumage. Using these avian metaphors, she creates paintings, drawings and transparencies to explore the perception of human communication.

Embassy of Argentina


Through Feb. 8

Roberto Fernandez Ibañez: Visions and Reflections

Curated by Fabián Goncalves Borrega, this exhibition features four of Uruguayan artist Roberto Fernandez Ibañez’s photographic series addressing the human impact on the environment: Earthy Resilience, Melting Point, The Hand and Rara Avis. His photographic material not only changes when it is exposed to light, but it can also be transformed, tuned and textured by techniques and laboratory processes. Fernandez Ibañez says he harnesses the environment’s capabilities to transform to shape his own artwork.

OAS Art Museum of the Americas F Street Gallery


Through Feb. 10


The celebrated American luxury fashion house Rodarte, founded by sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy, are featured in the first fashion exhibition organized by the National Museum of Women in the Arts. The display explores the distinctive design principles, material concerns and reoccurring themes that position the Mulleavys’ work within the landscape of contemporary art and fashion. Spanning the first 13 years of Rodarte, nearly 100 complete looks, presented as they were shown on the runway, will highlight selections from their most pivotal collections.

National Museum of Women in the Arts


Feb. 14 to May 19

PINK Ranchos and Other Ephemeral Zip Codes

Through this series of interconnected works, Colombian-American artist Carolina Mayorga invites the audience to enter a PINK-mented reality and experience her bicultural interpretations of those living inside ranchos, cambuches, shelters and other ephemeral zip codes. This site-specific multimedia project is the result of a year of artistic investigation on issues of home and homelessness and the artist’s fascination with the color pink. By applying the pigment to women and children (characters typically associated with home), memories of her native Colombia, 14 years of residency in D.C. and AMA’s permanent collection, she has created a pleasing environment to contrast the experiences of those living in exile, displacement, dislocation, relocation and eviction.

OAS Art Museum of the Americas


Feb. 16 to May 19

Zilia Sánchez: Soy Isla (I Am an Island)

The Phillips presents the first museum retrospective of Cuban artist Zilia Sánchez. This long-overdue exhibition examines the artist’s prolific yet largely unknown career that spans almost 70 years, featuring more than 60 works including paintings, works on paper, shaped canvases and sculptural pieces, alongside illustrations, design sketches and ephemera. Many of Sánchez’s works reference protagonists from ancient mythology (such as Trojans, Amazonians, and Antigone—all warriors and female heroines). Others have reoccurring motifs of lunar shapes, erotic topologies and tattoo drawings that map physical and psychological spaces.

The Phillips Collection


Through Feb. 18

Gordon Parks: New Tide, Early Work 1940-1950

During the 1940s American photographer Gordon Parks (1912–2006) grew from a self-taught photographer making portraits and documenting everyday life in Saint Paul and Chicago to a visionary professional shooting for Ebony, Vogue, Fortune and Life. For the first time, the formative decade of Parks’s 60-year career is the focus of an exhibition, which brings together 150 photographs and ephemera.

National Gallery of Art


Through Feb. 22

Tradition: Transformed: Bojagi

Vibrant fiber works capture the artistry and originality of the traditional Korean wrapping cloth, bojagi, by artists Kumjoo Ahn, Julia Kwon and Wonju Seo. These three Korean-American artists strive to convey deep social and emotional commentary through the integration of traditional techniques and innovative contemporary artistry in their work. By transforming an iconic traditional art and craft like bojagi in terms of both style and substance, Ahn, Kwon and Seo tackle questions of women’s evolving role in society, the notion of feminine art, and experiences of both cultural shock and cultural harmony between East and West.

Korean Cultural Center


Feb. 27 to Oct. 20

Striking Iron: The Art of African Blacksmiths

More than 225 works of art — including blades and currencies in myriad shapes and sizes, wood sculptures studded with iron, musical instruments and elaborate body adornments — reveal the histories of invention and technical sophistication that led African blacksmiths to transform one of Earth’s most fundamental natural resources into objects of life-changing utility, empowerment, prestige, artistry and spiritual potency.

National Museum of African Art


Through March 1

Shane Pickett: Djinon Djina Boodja Look at the Land I Have Travelled

During his lifetime, Shane Pickett (1957-2010) was one of Western Australia’s most significant contemporary Aboriginal artists. “Djinong Djina Boodja (Look at the Land That I Have Travelled)” features works from the most radical and significant phase of his career. Balancing innovation with tradition, modernity with an ancient spirituality, they are complex visual metaphors for the persistence of Nyoongar culture against the colonizing tide of modernity.

Embassy of Australia Art Gallery


Through March 17

The Gifts of Tony Podesta

The first major exhibition drawn from the museum’s Corcoran Legacy Collection features photography and sculpture donated by Tony Podesta over the past decade to the Corcoran Gallery of Art, which is now part of the American University Museum’s holdings.

American University Museum


Through March 17

Jiří Kolář (1912-2002): Forms of Visual Poetry

During the communist regime in Czechoslovakia, modernist Czech poet and visual artist Jiří Kolář (1914-2002) encountered considerable challenges, including a prison sentence for the critical stance toward the system expressed in his poetry. Whether because “images” were less easily censurable than “words” or for other, personal reasons, from about 1959, he focused exclusively on visual arts. Yet most of his mixed-media works remained profoundly concerned with the word/image relationship, and can best be described as “visual” poetry.

American University Museum


Through March 17

Michael B. Platt + Carole A. Beane: Influences and Connections

Standing at the foot of Australia’s sacred sandstone monolith known as Uluru, Michael B. Platt and Carol A. Beane envisioned a world invisible to many others. The world is at once primordial and imminent, spiritual and mortal. Inspired by the ancestral stories told by the indigenous keepers of Australia’s most sacred grounds, Platt and Beane fuse poetic image with word.

American University Museum


Through March 31

First Chefs: Fame and Foodways from Britain to the Americas

Just like today, getting food from farm to table in the early modern British world was hard work. And just like today, most of that hard work went unrecognized. “First Chefs” tells the stories of the named and unnamed heroes of early modern food culture, and juxtaposes the extravagance of an increasingly cosmopolitan and wealthy upper class against the human cost of its pleasures: the millions of enslaved women, children, men, servants, gardeners, street criers and laborers who toiled to feed themselves and many others.

Folger Shakespeare Library


Through April 14

Ambreen Butt – Mark My Words

This is the first solo exhibition in Washington, D.C., for Pakistani-American artist Ambreen Butt (born 1969). Featuring 13 mixed-media works on paper, “Mark My Words” reveals the connection between the artist’s global consciousness and the physical mark-making techniques that she uses to create her works.

National Musuem of Women in the Arts


Through April 28

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer: Pulse

Innovative Mexican-Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer brings the largest interactive technology exhibition to the Hirshhorn. “Pulse” takes up the entire second level, with three major installations using heart-rate sensors to create audiovisual experiences from visitors’ biometric data. Together, the biometric signatures will create spellbinding sequences of soundscapes, lights and animations.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden


Through 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. 29, 2019

Good as Gold: Fashioning Senegalese Women

In the cities of the West African nation of Senegal, stylish women have often used jewelry as part of an overall strategy of exhibiting their elegance and prestige. Rooted in the Wolof concept of sañse (dressing up, looking and feeling good), “Good as Gold” examines the production, display, and circulation of gold in Senegal as it celebrates a significant gift of gold jewelry to the National Museum of African Art’s collection.

National Museum of African Art


Through Nov. 17, 2019

Portraits of the World: Korea

Pioneering feminist artist Yun Suknam (born 1939) uses portraiture to gain insights into the lives of women, past and present. A wood assemblage portrait of her mother is the centerpiece of this exhibition, which includes portraits of American artists such as Louise Bourgeois, Louise Nevelson, Marisol, Kiki Smith and Nancy Spero.

National Portrait Gallery



Through Feb. 3

American Ballet Theatre: Harlequinade

The D.C. premiere of Ratmansky’s retelling of Marius Petipa’s 19th-century comic ballet follows its New York world premiere in summer 2018. He brings the “lost” classic to life with a bold new staging co-produced with Australian Ballet, inspired by Petipa’s archival notes and set to original music by Riccardo Drigo. Tickets are $39 to $199.

Kennedy Center Opera House


Feb. 5 to 10

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

Now more than ever, the world needs the power of dance to bring people together and connect us all by our common humanity. Celebrating its 60th anniversary, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater continues to push the art form into fascinating new territory while still honoring signature classics like Ailey’s masterpiece of hope and redemption, “Revelations.” Tickets are $59 to $219.

Kennedy Center Opera House


Feb. 19 to 24

Tap Dogs

Dein Perry’s global dance sensation “Tap Dogs” hits the road on an international tour of jaw-dropping new surprises. An adrenaline-pumped cast turns traditional tap dancing upside-down and into the ultimate night out. Tickets are $49 to $99.

Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater


Feb. 27 to March 3

The Washington Ballet: The Sleeping Beauty

The romantic and timeless tale of a magical kiss and the beloved story of Princess Aurora, her handsome prince and the evil Carabosse. A quintessential classical ballet inspired by the fairy tale of true love’s kiss and the triumph of good over evil. Tickets are $25 to $160.

Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater



Feb. 4 to March 4

Chinese Art: From the Bronze Age to the People’s Republic

With a dynamic and far-reaching history that spans the Neolithic period to the modern age, Chinese civilization has given rise to some of the world’s most remarkable artistic creations. Through four weekly sessions, Robert DeCaroli, a professor at George Mason University, explores that complex legacy by examining how shifts in China’s social, religious, and political life have influenced transformations in its material culture. Tickets are $140; for information, visit www.smithsonianassociates.org.

S. Dillon Ripley Center


Wed., Feb. 6, 6:45 p.m.

Instantly French: A Classic Kitchen Technique Goes Modern

One of the latest cooking crazes has its roots in culinary history. French households have relied on the conventional pressure cooker for generations. Called la cocotte-minute, the pressure cooker was invented by 17th-century physicist Denis Papin, and it has long been considered a secret weapon among French home cooks. Food and travel writer Ann Mah examines how the multifunctional electric pressure cooker can be used for traditional French recipes—as well as those around the world. Tickets are $30; for information, visit www.smithsonianassociates.org.

S. Dillon Ripley Center


Thu., Feb. 7, 6:45 p.m.

Along the Coast of Many Cultures: Art and Architectural Treasures of Croatia

You may recognize the towering walls of Dubrovnik, the famed city-state of the Renaissance, but Croatia has countless other art and architectural treasures. Situated at a geographical intersection of several cultures, this country has been coveted by various foreign powers for centuries, with Romans, Byzantines, Venetians, and Ottomans all leaving their mark. Aneta Georgievska-Shine, a scholar of Renaissance and Baroque art and lecturer at the University of Maryland, examines the artistic legacy of this long and tangled history. Tickets are $45; for information, visit www.smithsonianassociates.org.

S. Dillon Ripley Center



Feb. 7 to 16

A Lunar New Year Celebration

The Kennedy Center presents its fourth annual celebration of the Lunar New Year, honoring the traditional holiday as commemorated in countries and territories around the world. The cornerstone event of this year’s festivities is the return of the distinguished ballet company National Ballet of China, performing its award-winning, evening-length ballet, “Raise the Red Lantern.” In addition, the popular free KC Chinese New Year Family Day returns to celebrate the Year of the Pig with live demonstrations and hands-on craft activities throughout the building.

Kennedy Center



Fri., Feb. 8, 7:30 p.m.

Sorrow of Love, Joy of Love: Love Songs of the Great Entertainers

At this Russian Chamber Art Society concert, Kazakh-American vocalist Timur — described by the Los Angeles Times as an “extravagantly transgressive tenor” — will pay a unique musical tribute to such charismatic Russian performers as Alexander Vertinsky, Ivan Kozlovsky, Sergei Lemeshev and Vadim Kozin. Accompanied by pianist Genadi Zagor, who will also perform solo improvisations, Timur will sing a rare selection of romantic melodies from the songbooks of these legendary entertainers, who captivated opera, concert hall and cabaret audiences throughout the 20th century. Tickets are $55, including post-concert reception; for tickets, visit thercas.com.

Embassy of France


Wed., Feb. 13, 8 p.m.

Washington Performing Arts: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Lauded as the “Number One Orchestra in the World” by Gramophone, the acclaimed Royal Concertgebouw returns to D.C. with a program evoking emperors and heroes. The “brilliant musician and an extraordinary visionary” (The Wall Street Journal) Pierre-Laurent Aimard joins the orchestra for Beethoven’s show-stopping “Emperor” Concerto. Tickets are $55 to $150.

Kennedy Center Concert Hall


Tue., Feb. 19, 6:30 p.m.

Armenian Festival Launch Gala

Join the PostClassical Ensemble for an evening inaugurating its Spring 2020 Armenian Festival, featuring Narek Hakhnazaryan, composer Vache Sharafyan and artist Kevork Mourad in events at the National Gallery of Art and the Washington National Cathedral. This dinner and concert gala event at the Armenian Embassy will be hosted by Ambassador Varoujan Nersesyan. For information, contact Matthew Gardner at gala@postclassical.com or (202) 630-4322.

Embassy of Armenia


Fri., Feb. 22, 7:30 p.m.

Wu Han and Friends: Schubertiad

Pianist Wu Han leads a starry ensemble of collaborators (Philip Setzer, violin; Paul Neubauer, viola; David Finckel, cello; Joseph Conyers, bass; and Michael Sumuel, baritone) in an exploration of Schubert’s oeuvre. Tickets are $40.

Wolf Trap



Feb. 1 to March 3

The Master and Margarita

The Devil descends on 1930s Moscow, wreaking havoc on the city’s corrupt literary and social elite. Meanwhile, a brilliant writer known as the Master is imprisoned in a psychiatric hospital by Soviet censors, and his devoted lover Margarita joins forces with the Devil and his demonic crew in a courageous effort to rescue the Master from his fate. What follows is a diabolical extravaganza complete with a satanic magic show, a fast-talking black cat, and a midnight ball hosted by the Devil himself. Tickets are $19 to $45; for information, visit www.constellationtheatre.org.

Source Theater


Feb. 4 to March 3


After a bad health scare, Octavia decides to put off her troubles and blow off some serious steam with her friends June and Imani. Will one last epic night on the town — a true test of their friendship full of outrageous, absurd encounters — lead to epiphany or disaster? Tickets start at $46.

Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company


Feb. 6 to March 10


A brilliant poet and soldier, Cyrano de Bergerac apparently has it all — except the confidence to win the heart of his beloved Roxane. Lacking traditional good looks and the ability to truly “fit in”, Cyrano partners with his handsome friend Christian, also in love with Roxane but lacking Cyrano’s way with words. Synetic Theater will apply its unique physical storytelling and a stylistic twist to this commedia-inspired wordless adaptation of “Cyrano.” Tickets are $20.

Synetic Theater


Feb. 7 to March 3

The Old Man, The Youth, and The Sea

(El Viejo, El Joben y El Mar)

Forced into exile for political reasons, Spain’s renowned philosopher Miguel de Unamuno confronts a young fisherman, a general and a journalist about their beliefs regarding freedom, reason and faith while he plans his escape from the island of Fuerteventura. Tickets are $48.

GALA Hispanic Theatre


Feb. 8 to March 10

The Heiress

After growing up subjected to her father’s disinterest and strong resentment, a young woman in the 1850s discovers what love is in her journey toward independence, growth and strength, without an impactful female role model in her life. Tickets are $40 to $95.

Arena Stage


Through Feb. 9

The Baltimore Waltz

Paula Vogel’s fantastical farce traces the European odyssey of sister and brother, Anna and Carl, in search of romance and a cure for her terminal illness, the fictitious ATD (Acquired Toilet Disease). Please call for ticket information.

Andrew Keegan Theatre


Through Feb. 10


Imagine that a Muslim political party, which embraces fundamental Islamist values, manages to win the 2022 French presidential election. And they do this with the support of France’s Socialist Party. “Submissions,” presented by Scena Theatre, explores this dystopia in a biting satire that mixes fictional characters with real-life politicians who capitulate to the Muslim Brotherhood as it seizes power and implements Sharia law. Tickets are $35 to $45.

Atlas Performing Arts Center


Through Feb. 17

Twelve Angry Men

Behind closed doors, tensions run high as a lone juror argues the innocence of a teenager accused of murder. In this provocatively resonant American drama, 12 jurors from all strata of society revisit the evidence, debate the issue of reasonable doubt and confront each other’s personal biases. Tickets are $17 to $64.

Ford’s Theatre


Through Feb. 24


Inspired by the power struggle between the richest of the oligarchs and an ambitious Vladimir Putin after the collapse of the Soviet Union, this timely cautionary tale of capitalism run amok by Kenneth Lin (“House of Cards”) explores U.S.-Russia relations, then and now. Tickets are $41 to $95.

Arena Stage


Through March 10

Nell Gwynn

A humble orange seller from the streets of Drury Lane steps onto the stage and becomes the darling of the Restoration theater. Nell discovers one of her biggest fans is none other than Charles II. Smitten with Nell’s spirit, the king brings her to court as a favorite mistress. Tickets are $42 to $79.

Folger Theatre