Electronic Superhighway

Where Will American Art Take You?

We are pleased to welcome you back to the Smithsonian American Art Museum and Renwick Gallery with safety measures in place

Thank you for your continued support while we were closed, and as we gradually reopen. We look forward to seeing you in the galleries. Stay safe and enjoy your visit.

Know Before You Go: Guidelines for Visiting

We are delighted to welcome visitors back into our galleries. To keep us all safe, we ask that visitors, including those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19, follow these safety measures to protect everyone’s health. Please review the important information below as you plan your visit. 

New Schedule

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We are open Wednesday through Sunday. SAAM – 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Renwick Gallery – 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.  

Face Coverings

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All visitors ages two (2) and older are required to wear a mask while visiting Smithsonian museums and indoor spaces, regardless of vaccination status.

Join SAAM and the National Postal Museum for a crafting happy hour. Grab your favorite drink and learn about printing mistakes on U.S. postage and what makes these faulty stamps so prized. Then enjoy a step-by-step crafting tutorial on how to make stamps out of household materials. Register now for Thursday, September 23, at 7 p.m. ET 

 

From the Director

Stephanie Stebich, the Margaret and Terry Stent Director, looks at artworks in the collection by Asian American artists, and contemplates how art can be a reflection of our current moment as well as give us the opportunity heal and unite.

Welcome Home, A Portrait of East Baltimore, 1975-1980 presents one of the documentary photography surveys funded by the National Endowment for the Art to celebrate the bicentennial of the country’s founding in 1976. The East Baltimore Survey was unique for having been conceived, led and carried out by women photographers—Elinor Cahn, Joan Clark Netherwood and Linda Rich and captures a visual record of a changing nation. Exhibition Now Open

Latest Blog Post

Drawn to Art: Ten Tales of Inspiring Women Artists

Drawn to Art is a comic series that illuminates the stories of ten women artists whose artwork is represented in the SAAM's collection, some of whom may not have received the attention they deserved in their lifetimes. 

Black woman sitting on a chair in the center of the cover with her hand resting on her forehead set against a patchwork background of colorful geometric and floral patterns. Text  reads, “Mickalene Thomas: Portrait”

 

 

Portrait: A Comic About Mickalene Thomas

When contemporary artist Mickalene Thomas was in art school, she couldn’t afford traditional materials and gravitated towards craft stores and the glitter and rhinestones within. Her paintings speak to female empowerment and of women of color owning and defining their own spaces.

Read the Story

 

A gray-and-white illustration depicts a bustling cityscape. A young woman with short dark hair, big eyes, and a bright smile stands behind a large camera on a tripod. Around her is a street filled with people all going in different directions with tall buildings rising above them.  At the top of the page, text reads, “Berenice Abbott: Picturing a City.”

 

 

Picturing a City: A Comic About Berenice Abbott

Born in 1898, Berenice Abbott discovered her gift for photography in Paris. When she returned home, she created iconic portraits of buildings and people in New York City, images that still move us to this day.

Read the Story

An illustration of a woman standing in front of a colorful painting with her back to the viewer.  Below, a smiling young girl in a white dress runs out of the frame and holds a paint brush with a swirl of red paint framing the words, "The Story of Alma Thomas: beneath the holly tree”

 

 

Beneath the Holly Tree: A Comic About Alma Thomas

Alma Thomas became the first woman to graduate from the art department at Howard University, as well as one of the first Black women to receive a degree in art. Her exuberant, colorful paintings explore the natural world around us, from garden to galaxy.

Read the Story

Host an Event

Looking for an elegant and dazzling location to host an event in 2021, and beyond? Contact us, and let us help you make your event unforgettable.

Reserve Your Space Now

New Acquisitions

Discover artworks recently added to the collection in New Acquisitions.

View New Acquisitions

Learn more about recently acquired artworks on SAAM's blog 
 

Exhibitions Online

Browse exhibitions online, including artwork galleries, and artist and curator interviews.

View Upcoming Exhibitions

View Current and Past Exhibitions

Explore the Collection

Celebrate the extraordinary creativity of artists whose works reflect the American experience and global connections.

Explore all Art + Artists in the Collection 

Browse Artwork by Category or Artist Names A-Z

Take a trip across the U.S.A. with Nam June Paik's "Electronic Superhighway: Continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii, 1995." Learn more about this iconic artwork that was a gift from the artist to the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM). Saisha Grayson, SAAM’s curator of time-based media, shares insights about Paik's life and the personal associations that, along with popular culture references, inform the media clips the artist included within this monumental map of the United States. Grayson also discusses the installation’s complexity and continued relevance today.
 
This video is part of the Smithsonian American Art Museum's ongoing series "American Art Moments." Join a SAAM expert and go beyond the artwork label to discover the untold stories and rich connections represented in some of the museum's most iconic artworks.

Explore all Museum Videos

For Educators

Local and national programs for teachers, students, and adult learners offer year-long professional opportunities for growth, learning, and professional development.

Explore online education resources and virtual programs 

Visit Us From Home

Immerse yourself in Google Street View’s 360° museum images from anywhere.

Tour the Museum Virtually 

Immersive Experiences

SAAM’s virtual reality museum apps present a selection of unique and immersive experiences.

For mobile
WONDER 360
Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death

For VR headsets
No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man
SAAM Beyond the Walls

Museum from Home: Crafting Edition

Enjoy the latest step-by-step guide to at-home crafting with SAAM’s craft master, and check out our video library of crafting projects from past Handi-hour events.

Start Crafting

Browse Art