The Smithsonian American Art Museum’s traveling exhibition program has circulated hundreds of exhibitions since it was established in 1951. Below are our current offerings.
On The Road
William H. Johnson's Fighters for Freedom series from the mid-1940s is a tribute to African American activists, scientists, teachers, and performers as well as international heads of state working to bring peace to the world. The exhibition Fighters for Freedom: William H. Johnson Picturing Justice is drawn entirely from the collection of more than 1,000 works by William H. Johnson given to the Smithsonian American Art Museum by the Harmon Foundation in 1967 and reminds us that individual achievement and commitment to social justice are at the heart of the American story.
National TourGibbes Museum of Artin Charleston, South Carolina–Albany Museum of Artin Albany, Georgia–The Rockwell Museumin Corning, New York–Smithsonian American Art Museumin Washington, DC–
Ideas about the American West, both in popular culture and in commonly accepted historical narratives, are often based on a past that never was, and fail to take into account important events that actually occurred. The exhibition Many Wests: Artists Shape an American Idea examines the perspectives of 48 modern and contemporary artists who offer a broader and more inclusive view of this region, which too often has been dominated by romanticized myths and Euro-American historical accounts.
National TourBoise Museum of Artin Boise, Idaho–Whatcom Museum of Artin Bellingham, Washington–Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Artin Eugene, Oregon–Utah Museum of Fine Artin Salt Lake City, Utah–Smithsonian American Art Museumin Washington, DC–
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.
National TourSmithsonian American Art Museumin Washington, DC–Amon Carter Museum of American Artin Fort Worth, Texas–Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouthin Hanover, New Hampshire–Frist Art Museumin Nashville, Tennessee–
Will be on Tour
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–Dayton Art Intitutein Dayton, Ohio–
October 8, 2021 — May 8, 2022Smithsonian American Art Museum (8th and G Streets, NW)This exhibition brings to life the Venetian glass revival of the nineteenth century on the famed island of Murano and the artistic experimentation the city inspired for artists such as John Singer Sargent and James McNeill Whistler.
National TourAmon Carter Museum of American Artin Fort Worth, Texas–Mystic Seaport Museumin Mystic, Connecticut–