Things to Do

April Art Preview

This month offers street photography at the National Gallery, local realism at Carroll Square, and a light festival in Anacostia.

Haven’t seen Doug Aitken’s “Song 1” yet? Hurry—it closes May 13. Photograph courtesy of the Hirshhorn.


Opening April 7 at the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery is Art of Darkness: Japanese Mezzotints From the Hitch Collection. The show displays prints and copperplates by Hamaguchi Yozo and Hamanishi Katsunori.

“Crossing the Line: 2012 Alumni Exhibition” and “NEXT at the Corcoran: Class of 2012” both open at the Corcoran Gallery of Art April 14. The first showcases works by 27 former Corcoran students, and the second displays work from this year’s graduating class.

“I Spy: Photography and the Theater of the Street, 1938-2010” opens in the National Gallery’s West Building April 22. The show displays almost 90 works by photographers such as Harry Callahan, Robert Frank, and Beat Streuli, revealing how they drew inspiration from what they found in urban settings.

Opening April 27 at the Smithsonian American Art Museum is “African American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era, and Beyond,” which reveals paintings, sculptures, and prints by 43 African-American artists, including Loïs Mailou Jones, Richmond Barthé, and Jacob Lawrence.

And if you haven’t seen Doug Aitken’s splendiferous “Song 1” at the Hirshhorn yet, hurry–it closes May 13. Read more here.


Running through April 14 at Addison/Ripley Fine Art is “Isabel Manalo: Bits of Elsewhere.” The show displays mixed-media paintings and photographs by Manalo, who explores negative space and the power of imagination in her expressive, colorful works.

Studio Gallery features work by three female artists–painter Harriet Lesser, sculptor Veronica Szalus, and printmaker Angelika Wamsler–through April 21.

Carroll Square presents “Washington Realism,” an exhibition by representational artists from the Washington area including Manon Cleary, Fred Folsom, Kevin McDonald, and more. Through April 27.

“Ripography: Works With Paper” runs through April 29 at the DC Arts Center, displaying constructed paper collages by artist Rex Weil.

Through April 30, La Luna Gallery has “Artist of the Light,” an exhibition of work by contemporary Irish artist Roisin Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick uses crystals and silk to create light-reflecting patterned works.

Continuing through May 25 at Hemphill Fine Arts is “Colby Caldwell: Gun Shy,” an exhibition of photographs by the Maryland-based artist.

April 4 through 29, Touchstone has two exhibitions revealing ceramics, wall art, and sculptures by Bill Mould and Elena Tchernomazova.

At Transformer, you can see “Bread and Butter: Artistic Perspectives on Food and Culture,” April 7 through May 19. The show riffs on the cultural and hierarchical implications of what we eat with artists Chanan Delivuk, Sara Pomerance, Kari Scott, Shannon Young, and others.


This month’s Phillips After Five is April 5, and has (you guessed it) a Japanese theme. Tickets ($12) get you access to exhibitions, gallery talks, language lessons, a kimono fashion show, themed food and drink, and more.

April 14, the Phillips Collection hosts a 2 PM screening of The Woodmans with director C. Scott Willis. The documentary explores the career of photographer Francesca Woodman.

Also in April 14 is Lumen8 Anacostia, a festival of lights, performances, site-specific art installations, and other events over the river.

Alec Baldwin delivers the Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy at the Kennedy Center April 16. Tickets are free, but should be reserved at

Harvard University’s professor of Japanese art, Yukio Lippit, discusses “Colorful Realm,” the National Gallery’s exhibit of rare flower and bird paintings, in the East Building Auditorium April 29.