Washington, DC is a paradise for all art and culture lovers. Incredible museums are hosting art exhibitions (some with free admissions). Works of famed artists, like Mark Rothko are on display highlighting themes of joy, despair, ecstasy and tragedy. At the same time, ARTECH House presents an installation on space exploration in collaboration with NASA.

Here are a few suggestions to help you cover some art experience in Washington, DC in the coming months!

1/ Mark Rothko: Paintings on Paper

Daily, Now – Mar 31, 2024.
Rothko is renowned for his towering abstract paintings on canvas, but few people know that he also created more than 1,000 paintings on paper over the course of his career. He viewed these as finished paintings in their own right—not simply preliminary studies intended for his own eyes. These remarkable works challenge our expectations about what “counts” as painting, as well as popular ideas about Rothko and his career.

This exhibition brings together more than 100 of Rothko’s most compelling paintings on paper, many on view for the first time. They range from early figurative subjects and surrealist works to the soft-edged rectangular fields, often realized at a monumental scale, for which Rothko is best known. Together, these radiant, rarely displayed paintings transform our understanding of one of the preeminent artists of the 20th century.

Admission is always free, and passes are not required.

4th St. & Constitution Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20565
United States

2/ ARTECHOUSE: Beyond the Light

In collaboration with NASA, ARTECHOUSE’s latest installation delivers an artistic expression of space exploration, technology and innovation. The cinematic experience explores the history of our universe through light and immersive audio, based on groundbreaking discoveries.

Purchase tickets through the link below for a 10% discount.
Tickets (10% discount)

1238 Maryland Avenue SW,
Washington, DC 20024

3/ Whistler: Streetscapes, Urban Change – Through May 4

The National Museum of Asian Art’s renowned collection of works by James McNeill Whistler inform this exhibition that explores European cities in an era of rapid change. Streetscapes, Urban Change showcases oil paintings, watercolors, pastels and prints, some of which are on some on view at the museum for the first time.

Visitors will be able to experience the American expatriate artist’s fascination with the stunning growth and transformation of major cities at the end of the 19th century.

10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. | Free Admission

National Museum of Asian Art,
1050 Independence Avenue SW,
Washington, DC 20560

4/ Composing Color: Paintings by Alma Thomas – Through June 2

Alma Thomas, who lived in DC and worked at Howard University for many years, developed a style all her own as a painter. She took to abstract painting late in her own life and at a crucial period in the country’s history, as political turmoil dramatically impacted the mid-1960s.

The Smithsonian American Art Museum, which possesses the largest public collection of Thomas’ art, will offer an intimate look at her creative evolution from 1959 to 1978 through her signature color-driven pieces.

11:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. | Free Admission

Smithsonian American Art Museum,
8th and G Streets NW, Washington, DC 20004

5/ Mini Memories: Souvenir Buildings from the David Weingarten Collection – Ongoing

Mementos, keepsakes and souvenirs. Whatever you choose to call them, objects can often contain added significance based on the memories they conjure.

The National Building Museum dials into this notion with a new exhibit entirely focused on souvenir buildings, culled from a collection of more than 3,000 miniatures.
The 400 structures on view include a wide range of detailed recreations, from architectural wonders to factories, and visitors will learn how these souvenirs are made and how they’re used.

Thursday through Monday, 10 am to 4 pm | Tickets

National Building Museum,
401 F Street NW, Washington, DC 20001

6/ Check out the reopened: National Museum of Women in the Arts

The only museum solely dedicated to championing women through the arts has reopened its doors with improved interior and exterior spaces, new mechanical systems, enhanced amenities and accessibility, enlarged gallery space and additional research and education space.
The reopening also includes a brand-new, groundbreaking exhibit known as The Sky’s the Limit (Through Feb. 25, 2024), as well as numerous other new displays.

National Museum of Women in the Arts,
1250 New York Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20005

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