Revolutions: Art from the Hirshhorn Collection, 1860–1960

Three abstract paintings in a gallery. the first painting is filled with circles in the shades of dark green, grey, pink, brown and black.

To inaugurate its 50th-anniversary season, the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden presents “Revolutions: Art from the Hirshhorn Collection, 1860–1960,” a major survey of artwork made during a transformative period characterized by new currents in science and philosophy, and ever-increasing mechanization. “Revolutions” captures shifting cultural landscapes through the largely chronological presentation. In its first rotation, the installation presents 208 artworks in the museum’s permanent collection by 117 artists—including Francis Bacon, Jean Dubuffet, Lee Krasner, Wifredo Lam, Jacob Lawrence, Georgia O’Keeffe and Jackson Pollock—made during 100 turbulent and energetic years.

The exhibition includes contemporary work by 19 artists, such as Torkwase Dyson, Rashid Johnson, Annette Lemieux, Dyani White Hawk and Flora Yukhnovich, whose practices demonstrate how many revolutionary ideas and approaches that arose during these 100 years remain critical. Organized by Hirshhorn Associate Curator Marina Isgro and Assistant Curator Betsy Johnson, “Revolutions” will fill the Museum’s second-floor outer-circle galleries from March 22, 2024, to April 20, 2025. 

“Revolutions” spotlights the rush of art historical movements and genres that characterized the arc of Modernism and the ascendancy of abstraction, notably through the work of artists interested in engaging the mind, not just the eye. This breadth was evident in Joseph Hirshhorn’s founding gifts to the Museum. An industrialist, collector, and philanthropist, Hirshhorn donated nearly 6,000 works—including a significant number of sculptures—in anticipation of the Museum’s opening on October 4, 1974, and 6,400 more upon his death in 1981. Together these gifts constitute one of the most important collections of postwar American and European art in the world. Today, the Hirshhorn collection comprises more than 13,130 artworks. 

“Revolutions” takes a primarily chronological approach to historical movements, pausing occasionally to introduce contemporary works that serve as throughlines. Artists with work on view in “Revolutions” include:

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Printed copies and a braille version are available at the museum

  • Berenice Abbott
  • Anni Albers
  • Josef Albers
  • David Alekhuogie
  • Alexander Archipenko
  • Jean Arp
  • Milton Avery
  • Francis Bacon
  • Giacomo Balla
  • Daniel Vladimir Baranoff-Rossiné
  • Castera Bazile
  • George Bellows
  • Rigaud Benoit
  • Thomas Hart Benton
  • Dawoud Bey
  • Charles Biederman
  • Oscar Bluemner
  • Amoako Boafo
  • Constantin Brancusi
  • Joan Brown
  • Alexander Calder
  • Emily Carr
  • Mary Cassatt
  • William Merritt Chase
  • Joseph Cornell
  • Carlotta Corpron
  • Ralston Crawford*
  • Abraham Cruzvillegas
  • Stuart Davis
  • Dorothy Dehner
  • Robert Delaunay
  • Sonia Delaunay
  • Richard Diebenkorn
  • Burgoyne Diller
  • Arthur G. Dove
  • Jean Dubuffet
  • Marcel Duchamp
  • Torkwase Dyson
  • Thomas Eakins
  • Max Ernst
  • Aleksandra Exster
  • Helen Frankenthaler
  • Yun Gee
  • Arshile Gorky
  • Adolph Gottlieb
  • George Grosz
  • Grace Hartigan
  • Marsden Hartley
  • Childe Hassam
  • Dyani White Hawk
  • Robert Henri
  • Auguste Herbin
  • Hans Hofmann
  • Loie Hollowell
  • Winslow Homer
  • Edward Hopper
  • Hector Hyppolite
  • Jasper Johns
  • Rashid Johnson
  • Wassily Kandinsky
  • Barbara Kasten
  • Franz Kline
  • Oskar Kokoschka
  • Käthe Kollwitz
  • Willem de Kooning
  • Lee Krasner
  • Wifredo Lam
  • Jacob Lawrence
  • Annette Lemieux
  • Fernand Léger
  • Nadia Khodossievitch Léger
  • Morris Louis
  • Rick Lowe
  • Stanton Macdonald-Wright
  • Sally Mann*
  • Reginald Marsh
  • André Masson*
  • Henri Matisse
  • Joan Miró
  • Joan Mitchell
  • Gabriele Münter
  • László Moholy-Nagy
  • Piet Mondrian
  • Henry Moore
  • Grandma Moses
  • Natsuyuki Nakanishi
  • Alice Neel
  • Barnett Newman
  • Aliza Nisenbaum
  • Georgia O’Keeffe
  • Catherine Opie
  • Nicolas Party
  • Paul Pfeiffer
  • Ann Pibal
  • Pablo Picasso
  • Horace Pippin
  • Jackson Pollock
  • Nathaniel Mary Quinn
  • Robert Rauschenberg
  • Man Ray
  • Larry Rivers
  • Auguste Rodin
  • Mark Rothko*
  • John Singer Sargent
  • Gino Severini
  • Ben Shahn
  • Leon Polk Smith
  • Janet Sobel
  • Joseph Stella
  • Clyfford Still
  • Rufino Tamayo
  • Pavel Tchelitchew*
  • Alma Thomas
  • Joaquín Torres-García
  • Cy Twombly
  • Edouard Vuillard
  • Tsuruko Yamazaki
  • Flora Yukhnovich
  • Zao Wou-Ki

* on view at future date


Designed by Paris-based exhibition specialists Studio Adrien Gardère,Revolutions” will be accompanied by free public programs, including an artist talk on March 22, and a 50th-birthday celebration on October 4.


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Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden: The Collection


Audio Tour

Katy Hessel’s Museums Without Men audio guide

Embedded in the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s 50th-anniversary exhibition, Katy Hessel’s Museums Without Men audio tour invites audiences to come closer to nine works by women artists on view in Revolutions: Art from the Hirshhorn Collection, 1860–1960. Stops include a Constructivist marionette by Aleksandra Aleksandrovna Exster, a blazing single-colored abstraction by Lee Krasner, and a sumptuous painting by Flora Yukhnovich. The free nine-stop tour is available on our website and via Hirshhorn Eye (Hi), the Museum’s award-winning smartphone guide.

Katy Hessel’s audio guide, part of her new Museums Without Men series, is available on our website and via Hirshhorn Eye throughout Revolutions, on view through April 20, 2025.

There are two ways to access this free audio tour:

Listen now

Listen inside Revolutions

About Katy Hessel

An art historian, author, curator, and broadcaster, Katy Hessel has become one of the most exciting voices in the art world through her Great Women Artists podcast and Instagram account, which foreground women artists of the past and present. Her debut book, The Story of Art Without Men, is a Sunday Times and New York Times bestseller. Her audio guide platform, Museums Without Men, launched in March 2024 at five leading global institutions, with future guides to come.


“Revolutions: Art from the Hirshhorn Collection, 1860–1960” is supported by a generous grant from The Ellsworth Kelly Foundation. Major support has been provided by Veronique and Marshall Parke and the John and Barbara Vogelstein Foundation. Additional funding has been provided by the Hirshhorn International Council and Hirshhorn Collectors’ Council.