Traveling Exhibition Program
See also: Artwork Loan Policy
As a federal institution, an important part of the mission of the Smithsonian American Art Museum is to make its collections and exhibitions available throughout the United States. The museum’s touring exhibition program was established to offer exhibitions of American art to museums throughout the country.
Below is a list of exhibitions currently offered for tour.
Offered for Tour
Reopening 2021Smithsonian American Art Museum (8th and G Streets, NW)In the 1960s, activist Chicano artists forged a remarkable history of printmaking that remains vital today. Many artists came of age during the civil rights, labor, anti-war, feminist and LGBTQ+ movements and channeled the period’s social activism into assertive aesthetic statements that announced a new political and cultural consciousness among people of Mexican descent in the United States. ¡Printing the Revolution! explores the rise of Chicano graphics within these early social movements and the ways in which Chicanx artists since then have advanced innovative printmaking practices attuned to social justice.
June 28, 2019–January 5, 2020Renwick Gallery (Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street NW)Ginny Ruffner (b. 1952) is a glass artist best known for her elegant sculptures and mastery of glass techniques. Recently, she has created work that combines traditional glass sculpture with Augmented Reality (AR) technology to create an interactive viewer experience. Visitors to the exhibition "Reforestation of the Imagination" will use a downloadable app that superimposes digital information over seemingly barren sculptures, creating two distinct realities to explore.
Populated with toy cowboys and cavalry, Barbie dolls and baseball players, David Levinthal’s photographs reference iconic images and events that shaped postwar American society. Despite their playful veneer, Levinthal’s images provide a lens through which to examine the myths and stereotypes lurking within our most beloved pastimes and enduring heroes. In doing so, Levinthal encourages us to consider the stories we tell about ourselves—what it means to be strong, beautiful, masculine, feminine, and ultimately, American.
National TourGund Gallery at Kenyon Collegein Gambier, Ohio–
Scheduling and Participation Fee
Exhibitions are usually scheduled for twelve-week periods, allowing four weeks between venues for packing and shipping. The participation fee varies from exhibition to exhibition and includes costs of preparing the works for travel, packing, crating, transportation (including couriers if necessary), and insurance under the museum's policy.
Exhibition Materials and Services
Published catalogues, brochures and additional materials are available for many of the exhibitions. Three working copies of the catalogue will be provided free of charge, and additional copies can be ordered at a discount. Posters, notecards, and other items may be available at a discount for resale in the exhibitor’s shop. Please visit our online shop for examples of our products. A sample press release may be sent to each exhibitor, along with images that can be used for publicity. Exhibition labels and intro panel text are provided electronically in Microsoft Word format.
Standards-based educational resources for grades K-12 are available online, adaptable to traveling exhibitions and with support from the Education Department. These materials may include artist interviews, lesson plans and interactive online activities. Ask about real-time videoconference programs for schools and adults. Curators may be available to lecture on request.
General Requirements for Exhibitors
- The exhibitor must be a nonprofit institution, essentially educational and aesthetic in purpose, that collects works of art and exhibits them to the public
- The exhibitor must have available professional staff trained in handling artwork
- The exhibitor must meet climate and security requirements and must submit an American Association of Museums’ standard facilities report
For more information on our available traveling exhibitions, or to reserve a slot on a tour, please contact:
Traveling Exhibition Program
Smithsonian American Art Museum
MRC 970, PO Box 37012
Washington DC 20013-7012
Tel: (202) 633-8478
Fax: (202) 633-8493
Jennifer Lee, LeeJ@si.edu