Fine Art Connoisseur wishes a warm congratulations to the National Portrait Gallery as it celebrates its 50th year in 2018 with the following special fine art exhibitions.
UnSeen: Our Past in a New Light: Ken Gonzales-Day and Titus Kaphar (March 23, 2018 through January 6, 2019), reveals how people of color have been missing in historical portraiture, and how their contributions to the nation’s past are rendered equally invisible. Focused around work by two contemporary artists using vastly different pictorial styles, the exhibition brings to the forefront visual representations of women, African Americans, Native Americans, Latino Americans, and other minorities to amend America’s historical narrative. Reworking traditional art representations, Gonzales-Day and Kaphar lay bare mainstream cultural biases and social constructions of race.
Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now (May 11, 2018 through March 20, 2019) explores the art of cut-paper profiles, a relatively unstudied art form, by examining its rich historical roots and considering its powerful contemporary presence. With both historical and contemporary explorations into the silhouette, “Black Out” reveals new pathways between the past and the present, particularly in terms of reassessing notions of race, power, individualism, and even our digital selves.
Daguerreotypes: Five Decades of Collecting (June 15, 2018 through June 2, 2019) highlights 50 years of the National Portrait Gallery’s art by showcasing early portrait photography. The installation includes portraits of such iconic figures as activist and reformer Dorothea Dix, entrepreneur and showman P.T. Barnum with Tom Thumb, Seneca Nation leader Blacksnake, U.S. Navy Commodore Matthew C. Perry, and artist Alfred Waud.