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Posted at 2:15 PM ET, 10/ 3/2007

Comings and Goings

By Julia Beizer

Celebrity photographs, video portraits and brushy British landscapes are among the highlights on the area art scene this month.


Jackie O. and John F. Kennedy greet visitors in the Presidential Suite at Madame Tussauds. (Lois Raimondo/The Washington Post)

Washington joins the ranks of other powerful world cities on Friday with the opening of our very own Madame Tussauds Wax Museum. Visitors to the new space in the former Woodies Building can mingle with the wax-y likenesses of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Katie Couric and Mayor-For-Life Marion Barry. On Friday and Saturday (Oct. 5-6), admission will be a relative bargain at $10 per person, with $1 going to Bread for the City. Beginning Sunday, adults can expect to pay a cool $25 to see the exhibits (children's prices were not available at press time).

Once again, Govinda Gallery pulls at our pop music heartstrings with "John and Yoko: A New York Love Story." Photographer Allan Tannenbaum snapped these lovey-dovey pictures of the couple just months before Lennon's murder. (Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5)

An unknown photographer shot "Mary Girow's Cadillac" on Sept. 9, 1956. (National Gallery of Art)

The National Gallery gives amateurs the spotlight in "Art of the American Snapshot." Opening Oct. 7, the exhibition traces the technological and societal changes that affected snapshot photography from the 1880s until the 1970s.

Also opening at the Gallery this month is "Let the World In: Prints by Robert Rauschenberg." The exhibit, which runs from Oct. 28 through March 30, features 60 prints by the revolutionary artist. Already on view at the Gallery is a survey of the work of celebrated British painter J.M.W. Turner. The exhibition, which features brushy landscapes and eerily empty cityscapes, earned a rave review from Post critic Blake Gopnik.

The Corcoran is equally busy this month with two promising, but wildly different exhibitions. "Annie Leibovitz," an exhibit of personal and professional shots by the noted photographer, opens on Oct. 13.

Still from Jeremy Blake's "Glitterbest," an unfinished cinematic portrait of Malcolm McLaren.

Two weeks later, the museum opens "Wild Choir: Cinematic Portraits by Jeremy Blake." Through art-videos that are part-graphic animation, part-collage, Blake painted portraits of cultural figures like designer Ossie Clark. Blake committed suicide this summer at the young age of 35. This exhibition is a chance to peek into the mind of a true contemporary genius -- however haunted he may have been. Admission fees for these exhibitions range from $10-$14 and can be purchased here in advance. A single ticket grants visitors admission to these two shows and the museum's Ansel Adams exhibition.

Linda McCartney's portrait of Jimi Hendrix goes on view at the National Portrait Gallery this month. (Copyright Estate of Linda McCartney)

More than 100 photographs on view in the National Portrait Gallery's "Let Your Motto Be Resistance" exhibition pay tribute to African Americans who have used resistance to shape American culture. Look out for portraits of Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth and W.E.B. Dubois. The exhibition opens on Oct. 19.

Jewelry, leatherworks and photographs mingle in "The Art of Being Tuareg," which opens Oct. 10 at the National Museum of African Art. The 250 works on display look at the evolving culture and way of life for these semi-nomadic peoples.

Matisse's gestural figures lurk in the mind of any art-lover. This exhibition at the Baltimore Museum of Art explores the painter's sculpting side. Opening on Oct. 28 (and requiring a $6-$15 special admission ticket), the exhibition brings together 160 paintings, drawings and sculptures exploring the artist's technique across media.

Reception of the Month

This Friday, Oct. 5, marks another installment of Hirshhorn After Hours, easily the best nighttime museum party in this town. Get tickets in advance for this evening of dancing, drinks and dyeing your own Morris Louis-inspired tote bag.

Equally enticing is the 6 to 9 p.m. opening that night at the Arlington Arts Center, which celebrates the opening of two new exhibits. Visitors will notice the first display before they even set foot in the art space. As part of her ongoing and evolving "O Project," artist Rosemary Feit Covey has created a 300-foot-long wrapper for the building that features thousands of forlorn faces. Also opening at the Arts Center that night is "Fall Solos 2007," a semiannual event at the gallery that gives emerging artists a chance to shine. Of the seven artists featured, I'm most looking forward to Heidi Fowler's paintings and Laurel Lukaszewski's stoneware curls.


Bodies, the creepy-crawly edutainment exhibit in the former Newseum space, closes up shop on Oct. 14. I was mildly grossed out by the sinewy, sliced corpses, but for those wanting an (expensive) biology lesson, next weekend's your last chance.

Sunday, October 7, would be a fine day to visit the National Museum of the Arts's Frida Kahlo show. The exhibit doesn't close until Oct. 14, but admission is free on the first Sunday of the month.

A National Gallery exhibition of Desiderio da Settignano's sculptures closes on Oct. 8.

The Logan Circle galleries close their early fall exhibitions later this month. Of all the great art in that part of town, I'm most partial to Chuck Close at Adamson, which closes on Oct. 20, and Renee Stout's exhibition of photography, sculpture, mixed media and all other kinds of work. That show at Hemphill closes on Oct. 27.


By Julia Beizer  | October 3, 2007; 2:15 PM ET
Categories:  Museums  
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This October 4, Thursday morning comment was, I'm sure, inadvertently deleted. Fortunately, I saved it.

Respectfully, if the Washington Post encourages challenges on the accuracy of their posted articles then some at the Washington Post will have to challenge themselves to open their minds to the facts and not life-long engrained perceptions.

Here is an opening in the matrix.

-ALL- so-called Degas bronze sculptures are -FAKE-.

The majority of those museums that have them in their collection violate their own endorsed ethical guidelines for monetary considerations. That makes it organized and fraud otherwise known as racketeering.

In closing, and respectfully, not to overtly cynical but I doubt any of you will believe what I have just told you is plausible, much less possible. How could the museums get away with it without being caught long ago. It just doesn't make any sense. Of course you may ask someone, an expert, a scholar, an art history professor or even one of your learned colleague and they will all probably say that is crazy. So, for all those crazy people, please link to:

View reality through a clear window.

Posted by: Gary Arseneau | October 4, 2007 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Beat it Gary.

Posted by: Arlington, VA | October 5, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

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