A Day at the Renwick Gallery

 The Renwick Gallery is newly renovated museum for contemporary craft and decorative art. It has been a branch of the Smithsonian American Art Museum since 1972.

After being closed for renovations for two years, the gallery reopened on November 13, 2015. The gallery currently features its inaugural exhibition titled WONDER, featuring nine major contemporary artists - Gabriel Dawe, Patrick Dougherty, Maya Lin, Tara Donovan, Jennifer Angus, Chakaia Booker, Leo Villareal, Janet Echelman, and John Grade  

woven sculptures made from tree saplings created by Patrick Dougherty

Gabriel Dawe created these massive weavings that are meant to trick the eye into thinking the threads are rays of light

Tara Donovan created looming spires from individually-stacked index cards

23,000 LED lights programmed by Leo Villareal flash above the grand staircase.

John Grade plastered a cast on an old hemlock tree and create a replica structure using 500,000 pieces of cedar

Mary Lin created an paid homage to the tides of the Chesapeake Bay on the floors and walls of this gallery space using green marbles

A hand-woven net created by Janet Echelman hangs in the grand salon. A carefully choreographed lighting program subtly changes the color of the sculpture with every perspective. The form of the sculpture is inspired by data sets of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami wave heights which hit Japan with devastating effects.

Chakaia Booker cuts, slashes, and re-works tires to create a sculptures that reminds us to re-contextualize the materials/resources we see daily yet never fully consider.

Jennifer Angus uses hundreds of insect species from Malaysia, Thailand, and Papua New Guinea in her installation. By altering the context in which we encounter such species, Angus startles us into recognition of what has always been a part of our world.

The Greek Slave by Hiram Powers, one of the best-known and critically acclaimed artworks of the nineteenth century.

The WONDER exhibits are set to begin leaving the gallery on May 8, 2016. If you haven't had a chance to visit the Renwick Gallery yet, I highly suggest you make the trip. Its open seven days a week from 10:30a to 5:30p and it only takes about 2 hours to get through all the exhibits. 


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