DC 7.3.15 Portrait Gallery/Am Art

textIt’s always funner to be in the dual museum National Portrait Gallery/Smithsonian Museum of American Art.

text rainBefore I got to the title, and saw the screen, this is what I first saw of the Romy Achituv and Camille Utterbach’s Text Rain.

1 to 3


watch thisSeven separate shows, 2 museums.

Both the Elaine de Kooning’s Portraits  and The Artistic Journey of Yasuo Kuniyoshi shows are both great as you get real in depth look at the work of both. His show really was a feat of curator ingenuity to be able to get so many small and foreign museums to take part. Her show is wonderful as you see the best painter, since Sargent, who can handle a brush to discover a personality, like some women “find” themselves by applying makeup. Both shows were well worth the price of admission, which you know, there is no admission!

huelga girlHow interesting the world has become since the likes of Cesar Chavez and Delores Huerta. Through black and white photos, we see the activism of the Chicano community for worker equity, in a not so distant past. I try to point out to the young, these complex boycotts caught the imagination of the consumers of household produce, enough for them to support the boycotts and not buying, bringing corporate farmers to the tables. It is not just “big” events, but thousands of small ones, that resonate in our culture.

huelgaGreat people watching.

The man of the couple on the right, was shooting his wife. He explained to the man on the left, now shooting them in this shot, that they knew the curator of the show. They had wanted a record to show the curator friend, they had seen the show. So he offered to take the picture, as he is doing here. The woman had been very stiff. As the couple posed together (and I am shooting the whole gang), I yelled out put up your arms like her. And they did, and here it is.

mongering mike

The Mingering Mike show is quite interesting as it is art, based upon a certain degree of fantasy. The artist imagines he is a performer, does mock-ups of album covers, creates members to his band, even writes and records songs (which someone discovered thirty years later), which led to us finding about the whole art form to begin with. A fun show in the American collection. The actual artist remains, by decision, anonymous.

Robert Shimomura's Shimomura Crossing the DelawareRobert Shimomura’s Shimomura Crossing the Delaware

Karin Davie Drag-onKarin Davie’s Drag-on

joan mitchell marlin and Helen Frankenthaler s Small ParadiseJoan Mitchell’s Marlin and Helen Frankenthaler’s Small Paradise

Lincoln and GinsbergLincoln and Ruth Bader Ginsberg in detail.

Milton Glaser's Dick Gregory and Alex Katz Bella AbzugMilton Glaser’s Dick Gregory and Alex Katz’ Bella Abzug
 Ross Rossin s Maya AngelouRoss Rossin’s Maya Angelou

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