Blue Line Orange Line
Earth Matters: Land as Material and Metaphor in the Arts of Africa
Now - January 5, 2014
Sublevel 2, Pavilion, outside in gardens
Earth Matters is the first major exhibition to examine the conceptually complex and visually rich relationship between African artists and the land upon which they live, walk, and frame their days. Approximately 100 artworks are on view in five thematic sections -- the Material Earth, Power of the Earth, Imagining the Underground, Strategies of the Surface, and Art as Environmental Action. These categories provide vantage points from which to examine the most poignant relationships that Africans have with the land, whether it be to earth as a sacred or medicinal material or to earth as something exploited by mining or claimed by burial. For the first time, five artists create land-art installations in the Smithsonian gardens.
African Mosaic: Building a Collection
Like a colorful mosaic made from a thousand pieces of brilliant glass, African Mosaic features some 100 objects that represent 10 years of building a permanent collection and reflect the diversity and outstanding quality of Africa's arts. On view are a variety of objects from gold jewelry and wooden figures to a coffin in the shape of a cell phone.
The Walt Disney-Tishman African Art Collection Highlights
Now - October 13, 2013
On view are 60 objects and 4 in the lobby from this comprehensive 525-piece collection of African art representing 20 African countries and 75 peoples and covers 5 centuries of African art, including most major styles ranging from a highly abstract Cameroon mask to a naturalistic carved wooden male figure from Madagascar. Many of the works inspired such 20th-century artists as Picasso and Juan Gris.
Catalogue: $39.95 (paper)
Free family guide
Serving as a welcome center, the pavilion features several contemporary and traditional objects, which are often on a large scale and rotated on a regular basis, to show a cross section of African art.