August Art Preview

Find three shows at the Corcoran, abstract drawings downtown, and a food truck fiesta at the Phillips this month.

By: Sophie Gilbert


At the Corcoran, “Charlotte Dumas: Anima,” the Dutch photographer’s first solo museum show in the United States, includes a new series of portraits of Arlington National Cemetery’s burial horses. The exhibit also features photos of gray wolves in Scandinavia and stray dogs in Italy. Read our review of the show here. Through October 28.

Opening in the Corcoran’s Gallery 31 space August 8 is “Manifest: Armed,” the first in a new series exploring how technology influences art. This first show—a percentage of the proceeds from which will go to the Aurora Victim Relief Fund—explores gun culture, displaying work by four different artists around that theme.

Also at the Corcoran through September 15 is “Take It to the Bridge,” a nine-week series of installations set in the museum’s new performance bridge. August 1 through 5, see “Canaries in McMansionland” by Jennifer Coster, an installation featuring live canaries living in large-scale birdcages designed like model mansions.

Through September 30, “Six Degrees of Peggy Bacon” in the Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture explores 1920s illustrator Peggy Bacon’s wide-ranging network of friends and fellow artists.

At the Renwick, see the most cutting-edge practitioners of contemporary crafts in “40 Under 40: Craft Futures,” a broad look at the faces of the movement working today. Our review of the show is here.

“Investigating Where We Live: Connecting With Anacostia” at the National Building Museum reveals a different side to the neighborhood, as captured by teenage residents. During a four-week summer program, participants in the NBM’s summer program explored Anacostia through photography, writing, interviews, and art.

Forty-six rarely shown works on paper from the permanent collection make up “Abstract Drawings,” a show at the American Art Museum highlighting work by Willem de Kooning, Gene Davis, Man Ray, Joseph Cornell, and others. The exhibit reveals the significant role drawing has played in abstraction, as both a means of experimenting and a medium for finished work. Through January 6.

Two new shows open at the Sackler Gallery this month. “Nomads and Networks: The Ancient Art and Culture of Kazakhstan” explores the early nomadic cultures from the Central Asian country as well as the elaborate objects excavated from their burial sites. August 11 through November 12.

Shadow Sites: Recent Work by Jananne al-Anidisplays video installations by an Iraqi-born artist whose work incorporates aerial photography, news footage, and archival images to play on old and new assumptions about the Middle East. August 25 through February 10.

American conceptual artist Barbara Kruger is the latest to explore the potential of the Hirshhorn’s circular space. “Barbara Kruger: Belief & Doubt” wraps the lower-level lobby and part of the bookstore in vinyl printed with Kruger’s trademark provocative words and questions. August 20 through 2014.


Through August 12, catch “Patrick Graham: Thirty Years” at the Katzen Arts Center, showcasing work by one of Ireland’s most acclaimed contemporary artists.

Through August 19, Long View Gallery has “Refresh II: Work by Some of Long View’s Best,” a show featuring work by regular Long View artists (Mike Weber, Amy Genser, Ryan McCoy) and a few new faces.

The DC Arts Center continues its “Wallmountables” show through August 25, where any artist can purchase wall space to display work.

Honfleur Gallery’s sixth annual East of the River Exhibition continues through September 8, with work by 16 artists with connections to the neighborhood.

August 1 through 26, Washington Printmakers Gallery has its 15th annual exhibition of small works. The show features 50 prints smaller than 13 square inches, done by a selection of artists from across the country.

Through August 31 at Addison/Ripley Fine Art, “All My Friends Are Painters,” displays work by W.C. Richardson, Steve Cushner, Katherine Mann, Tom Bunnell, and more.

It isn’t technically in a gallery, but through September 30 “Awning Studies: Marvin Gaye Park” displays the results of Patrick McDonough’s residency at the Socrates Sculpture Park in New York.

August is “Fresh Produce” month at the Fridge, meaning art, graffiti, film, slam poetry, photography, and more by five local collectives. August 4 through September 2.

Opening August 24 at Flashpoint is “Polly Townsend: Slower Than This,” an exhibition of the London artist’s vast, cavernous landscapes.


The DC Arts Center has a happy hour with DJ Alphabetts August 1.

Phillips After 5 returns August 2 with a food truck fiesta. The event includes food from DC Empanadas and Rolling Ficelle, music by the jazz-influenced Duende Quartet, and a gallery talk about Jasper Johns’s use of cultural imagery.

The Corcoran is holding two community meetings to discuss its future August 2 and 23. Entrance is free, but registration is encouraged.

The National Portrait Gallery’s monthly pop quiz returns August 22, this time with an Olympic theme.