What's On

View of "American Cool" exhibition

Past Exhibitions

  • pastel sketch of a man in a suit

    Celebrate: John F. Kennedy

    Portrait on view May 19, 2017 - July 9, 2017
    First floor

    The National Portrait Gallery joins the nationwide celebration of the life and legacy of President John F. Kennedy on the centennial of his birth.

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  • Double Take: Daguerreian Portrait Pairs

    June 17, 2016 - June 4, 2017
    First floor

    Highlighting the depth of the National Portrait Gallery’s early photography collection, this exhibition will showcase fourteen daguerreotypes—two portraits each—of seven subjects: George Bancroft, Jenny Lind, Zachary Taylor, Frederick Douglass, Jefferson Davis, Daniel Webster, and John Quincy Adams.

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  • Babe Ruth and other Red Sox pitchers by Underwood & Underwood (active 1880 - c. 1950) / Gelatin paper print, 1915 / National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

    One Life: Babe Ruth

    June 24, 2016 - May 21, 2017
    First floor

    This exhibition examines Babe Ruth as a baseball legend and the marketing frenzy his name and image fueled before the commercialization of sports superstars became routine.

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  • hree women in a  darkened room

    Bill Viola: The Moving Portrait

    November 18, 2016 - May 7, 2017

    This exhibition reveals Viola’s constant, yet previously unrecognized, thematic interest in portraiture. “Bill Viola and the Moving Portrait” offers a selection of Viola’s works that focus on the face and the body, using his signature metaphors of water, light and spirituality.

    Image:  Three Women / Bill Viola / 2008, Color High-Definition video on plasma display mounted vertically on wall / 9:06 minutes / Bill Viola Studio / Performers: Anika, Cornelia, Helena Ballent / © Bill Viola


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  • Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz in purple headress and gown

    IDENTIFY: Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz

    Performance May 6, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.
    Third Floor, The Great Hall

    Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz's REINAS (Queens) series considers female archetypes who have shaped her identity and worldview.

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  • image of three African American men in colorful jackets all playing guitars

    In Memoriam: Chuck Berry

    Portrait on view March 21, 2017 - April 9, 2017

    The life of rock ’n’ roll legend Chuck Berry is recognized with a collage by Red Grooms (1978), installed in the museum’s In Memoriam space on the first floor.

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  • Photograph portrait of Donald Trump in a suit and tossing an apple in the air.  The background is blue sky with clouds.

    Inauguration 2017: Donald J. Trump

    Portrait on view from January 13, 2017 - February 26, 2017
    First floor

    On November 8, 2016, real estate magnate, businessman, and reality television star Donald J. Trump completed a stunning rise to the presidency by defeating Hillary Rodham Clinton after one of the most volatile and divisive campaigns in recent memory.

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