View of Hirshhorn Museum building

May 27, 2021

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden To Reopen to the Public Aug. 20 With Major Exhibitions by Mark Bradford and Marcel Duchamp; Opening Laurie Anderson and Yayoi Kusama in the Fall
The National Museum of Modern Art Will Continue Virtual Programming Initiatives With Online Exhibition Highlighting New Media Works

The Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden announced today, May 27, it will reopen to the public Aug. 20 with four exhibitions following its 17-month COVID-related closure. These exhibitions include “Marcel Duchamp: The Barbara and Aaron Levine Collection” and “Mark Bradford: Pickett’s Charge” on view at the museum as well as “Lost in Place: Voyages in Video” and “It’s Art If I Say So: Marcel Duchamp in the Hirshhorn’s Collection” as digital offerings.

The museum will be open Wednesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Free, timed-entry passes are required, and new health and safety procedures are in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A full list of the measures can be found at https://www.si.edu/visit.

“Marcel Duchamp: The Barbara and Aaron Levine Collection” features the gift of over 50 major historical artworks, including more than 35 seminal works by Duchamp, promised to the museum by Washington, D.C., collectors Barbara and Aaron Levine. The exhibition is complemented by its online counterpart, “It’s Art If I Say So,” which explores the resonant impact of Duchamp on contemporary art featuring names such as Lois Mailou Jones, Robert Rauschenberg, Cindy Sherman and Andy Warhol.

On the third level, visitors will find “Pickett’s Charge,” a monumental, site-specific commission by Mark Bradford. Drawing directly from artist Paul Philippoteaux’s landmark 19th-century cyclorama depicting the final charge of the Battle of Gettysburg, “Pickett’s Charge” invites visitors to interrogate conventional historical narratives. Weaving together reproductions of the original 1883 painting with multiple layers of colored paper, Bradford transforms the historic imagery to reveal the hidden textures and complexities lurking just beneath the surface.

As part of the museum’s online programming, “Lost in Place: Voyages in Video” is a series of 11 videos by a range of international contemporary artists, including Ragnar Kjartansson, Laure Prouvost, Jacolby Satterwhite and Superflex. The videos are linked by a common examination into the complicated, unusual or uneasy relationships between people and the places they inhabit. Hosted on the Hirshhorn website, the exhibition will make a new video available for streaming every week for 11 weeks. Each video will remain on view for one month.

“We are so pleased to welcome visitors once again to our national museum of contemporary art,” said Hirshhorn Director Melissa Chiu. “Throughout the past year, art has provided an important relief and outlet as people experienced the consequences of the pandemic. We are excited to continue to mount groundbreaking exhibitions that celebrate and exemplify the creativity present in our world today.”

In addition to the ongoing exhibitions, this fall the museum will host “Laurie Anderson: The Weather,” the celebrated multimedia artist’s largest-ever U.S. exhibition. Opening in mid-September, the exhibition will span Anderson’s groundbreaking video and performance works from the 1970s to the present and guide visitors through an immersive audiovisual experience in the museum’s second-floor galleries. This dynamic survey will showcase the artist’s boundless creative process by highlighting time-based media, as well as the largest presentation of her paintings to date. Using the museum’s prominent location on the National Mall, “The Weather” encourages viewers to reconsider the sociopolitical landscape.

Following the success of “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors,” the Hirshhorn’s 2017 blockbuster survey, the museum will open “One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection” this November, debuting an acquisition by the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, including one of her most recent Infinity Mirrored Rooms. The forthcoming exhibition cements the enduring art-historical connection between the visionary artist and the Hirshhorn. The exhibition illuminates Kusama’s (b. 1929) seven-decade practice in the context of the permanent collection, including two of her transcendent Infinity Mirrored Rooms and sculptures, including “Pumpkin” (2016) and “Flowers—Overcoat” (1964), an early painting and photographs of the artist. The Hirshhorn’s 2017 survey traveled to five North American art museums, introducing Kusama’s spellbinding visions to record audiences.


About the Hirshhorn

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the national museum of modern and contemporary art and a leading voice for 21st-century art and culture. Part of the Smithsonian, the Hirshhorn is located prominently on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Its holdings encompass one of the most important collections of postwar American and European art in the world. The Hirshhorn presents diverse exhibitions and offers an array of public programs on the art of our time—free to all. The museum will be open Wednesday to Sunday 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. beginning Friday, Aug. 20. Its outdoor sculpture garden is open daily 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. For more information, visit hirshhorn.si.edu. Follow the museum on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.


Image: View of the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Photo by Cathy Carver.

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