National Portrait Gallery

National Portrait Gallery We tell the story of America by portraying the people who shape the nation’s history, development and culture.
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Make I Contact. Meet the most remarkable Americans all in one place. From George Washington to George Carlin, Sequoyah to Rosa Parks, James Monroe to Marilyn Monroe, we are home to the icons of our nation's history and culture. Join us to discover the nation's story through the people who've shaped it. On-topic discussion is encouraged in a civil manner. Please treat other users with respect. Legal: si.edu/legal

02/26/2020

This week, 2.8 million Smithsonian digital collections were added to the public domain. Among the #SmithsonianOpenAccess release are the portraits Phillis Wheatley, Mary Stevenson Cassatt, Sequoyah, Pocahontas, George Washington, and nearly 6,000 more objects from our collection. Explore nearly two centuries of the Smithsonian’s interdisciplinary research: s.si.edu/openaccess

The Museum Store will be closed for a refresh from Saturday, February 29 through Sunday, March 8. Credit card sales only...
02/25/2020

The Museum Store will be closed for a refresh from Saturday, February 29 through Sunday, March 8. Credit card sales only February 25–28. Shop online anytime at saamnpgstore.si.edu. We reopen with new spring products Monday, March 9!

02/25/2020
Smithsonian

Smithsonian

The Smithsonian's treasures belong to you. Now you can download, transform and share the Smithsonian’s Open Access content for any purpose, for free, without further permission from the Smithsonian.

We can't wait to see how you get creative with about 2.8 million Smithsonian collection images, 3D models, data and research.

Tune in to our #SmithsonianOpenAccess event tonight at 7:15 p.m. ET at si.edu/OpenAccess.

Join The Lily and the Portrait Gallery in toasting your 30s at the D.C. premiere of The Lily’s documentary, “The Jessica...
02/25/2020
‘The Jessicas are turning 30,’ a short documentary from The Lily

Join The Lily and the Portrait Gallery in toasting your 30s at the D.C. premiere of The Lily’s documentary, “The Jessicas are turning 30.”

This first Remix event of the season includes champagne, games, trivia, art, and a cookie-decorating workshop with The Sweet Feminist. You won't want to miss it!

Thursday, March 26 at 6 p.m., Kogod Courtyard.
More info: bit.ly/38Ucn94

In 1989, these six people were named Jessica, the most popular name for girls that year. But from there, their lives took different paths. Now, they reflect on life at the brink of 30 — an age heavy with expectation.

We are excited to announce the winners of this year's Teen Portrait Competition! Congratulations to Chiemeka Offor and S...
02/20/2020

We are excited to announce the winners of this year's Teen Portrait Competition!

Congratulations to Chiemeka Offor and Sofia Gress! 🎉 Their works, "Showtime" (left) and "What I Am, What I Think" (right) will be displayed alongside the exhibition, "The Outwin 2019: American Portraiture Today."

Did you know that the Portrait Gallery has the nation's only complete collection of presidential portraits outside the W...
02/17/2020

Did you know that the Portrait Gallery has the nation's only complete collection of presidential portraits outside the White House? This President's Day, celebrate with a visit to the exhibition, "America's Presidents." 🇺🇸

Can't make it? We have the exhibition online: americaspresidents.si.edu/

"Four smartly dressed old men, with their sage beards to match, carefully study a work of art that lies out of frame. A ...
02/14/2020
"Portraits of the World: Denmark" Explores Artistic Communities

"Four smartly dressed old men, with their sage beards to match, carefully study a work of art that lies out of frame. A portrait of these Kunstdommere — 'art judges' in Danish — by Michael Ancher is the centerpiece of the National Portrait Gallery’s current exhibition 'Portraits of the World: Denmark'"

Four smartly dressed old men, with their sage beards to match, carefully study a work of art that lies out of frame. A portrait of these Kunstdommere — “art judges” in Danish — by Michael Ancher is the centerpiece of the National Portrait Gallery’s current exhibition “Portraits of the Wo...

National Portrait Gallery's cover photo
02/14/2020

National Portrait Gallery's cover photo

Love is in the air! 💖 A love for art and history, that is! Through the visual arts, performing arts, and new media, the ...
02/14/2020

Love is in the air! 💖 A love for art and history, that is! Through the visual arts, performing arts, and new media, the Portrait Gallery presents poets and presidents, visionaries and villains, actors and activists whose lives form our national identity. We love being able to narrate the multi-faceted and ever-changing story of America through the individuals who have shaped its culture. Do you have a portrait that you're currently in love with? 💝

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Image Credit: Marian Anderson by William Henry Johnson, c. 1945. Smithsonian American Art Museum, gift of the Harmon Foundation; Kunstdommere (Art Judges) by Michael Ancher, 1906. The Danish Museum of National History, Frederiksborg Castle; Martin Luther King, Jr., wife Coretta Scott King, and their daughter Yolanda by Dan Weiner, 1956. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution © Sandra Weiner. © International Center of Photography, New York; Celia Cruz by Alexis Rodríguez-Duarte, 1994 (printed 2016). National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; acquisition made possible through the Smithsonian Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center. © 1994, Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte.

Portrait Gallery curator for Latinx art and history, Taína Caragol, on Kehinde Wiley and the Artistic Vision of the Obam...
02/13/2020
What the Obamas’ Portraits Reveal About the Changing American Art Canon

Portrait Gallery curator for Latinx art and history, Taína Caragol, on Kehinde Wiley and the Artistic Vision of the Obama White House.

On February 12th, 2018, the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery unveiled the portraits of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. The White House and the museum had worked togethe…

"A place of mourning was probably not what Congress had in mind when they established the National Portrait Gallery in 1...
02/12/2020
How One Museum Helps the Nation Mourn

"A place of mourning was probably not what Congress had in mind when they established the National Portrait Gallery in 1962, but perhaps they would not be surprised that this is partly what they got."

When prominent Americans like Kobe Bryant die, mourners flock to the National Portrait Gallery in search of solace

Making plans for Presidential Weekend? Don't forget to add our Presidential Family Fun Day to your list! On Saturday, Fe...
02/10/2020

Making plans for Presidential Weekend? Don't forget to add our Presidential Family Fun Day to your list!

On Saturday, February 15 from 11:30-3 PM, join us as we celebrate President's Day with crafts, music, dancing, games, and special tours of our, "America's Presidents" exhibition.

We'll be celebrating with artists, President Lincoln's Cottage, the DC Public Library, the Washington Nationals Racing Presidents, and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing!

Free and open to the public in the Kogod Courtyard.

What is your favorite Oscar-nominated film? We have portraits from some of the greatest Academy Award winners in our col...
02/09/2020

What is your favorite Oscar-nominated film? We have portraits from some of the greatest Academy Award winners in our collection, from Janet Gaynor to Tom Hanks.

Four of Katharine Hepburn's Oscars are also in the Portrait Gallery collection for her roles in, "Morning Glory," "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner," "The Lion in Winter," and "On Golden Pond." The figure stands on a film reel with five spokes, signifying the original branches of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences: actors, directors, producers, technicians and writers.

The pedestal (seen here) was raised in 1945, giving Oscar a height of 13½ inches; it weighs 8½ pounds. It was composed of the alloy Britannia and coated in twenty-four-karat gold but has now gone back to its original gold-plated bronze material since 2016. 🏆

Donated to us by the Estate of the Katharine Hepburn, you can see her four Oscars on view now in our, "20th Century Americans: 1960-2000" exhibition on the 3rd floor.
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Image Credit: Best Actress Oscar for "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner", 1967. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of the Estate of Katharine Hepburn.

"'To the world he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies who lived well into his golden years,' wrote Doug...
02/07/2020
Kirk Douglas, Towering Icon of Hollywood's Golden Age, Dies at 103

"'To the world he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies who lived well into his golden years,' wrote Douglas’ son, actor and producer Michael Douglas..."

A mainstay of 1950s and '60s cinema, Douglas was one of Classic Hollywood's last surviving stars

Kobe Bryant's portrait is on view now.
02/06/2020
Kobe Bryant Unguarded

Kobe Bryant's portrait is on view now.

A rarely seen side of the NBA legend hangs in display at the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery

Meet Leslie Ureña, the Portrait Gallery's Associate Curator of Photographs and curator of, "In Mid-Sentence."
02/05/2020
Torch | A few of my favorite things: Leslie Ureña

Meet Leslie Ureña, the Portrait Gallery's Associate Curator of Photographs and curator of, "In Mid-Sentence."

Jan 31 A few of my favorite things: Leslie Ureña Smithsonian staff and volunteers work countless hours in the halls of our museums and research centers, in the field, at the Zoo, in our gardens and facilities. We are privileged to spend time with some of the nation’s most cherished treasures as w...

In 1996, George Walker became the first African American to win the Pulitzer Prize for Music with his composition Lilacs...
02/05/2020

In 1996, George Walker became the first African American to win the Pulitzer Prize for Music with his composition Lilacs for Voice and Orchestra. This was one of many firsts for the virtuoso pianist and classical composer, who challenged expectations and charted his own course in a career spanning eight decades. A superior student, he was the first black graduate of Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music and the first black instrumentalist to perform with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Despite this promising start, Walker faced racial discrimination that severely limited his performance opportunities as a pianist. He responded by pursuing dual careers as a teacher and composer, producing more than ninety works that have placed him at the forefront of contemporary classical music. In these photographs, Walker appears framed by his home piano and captured in the act of scoring a composition—something he always did entirely by hand. #BlackHistoryMonth
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Image Credit: George Walker by Frank Schramm. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Frank Schramm. © 2017 Frank Schramm.

Did you know we have an exhibition dedicated to dynamic American sports figures? A lively combination of portraits, arti...
02/02/2020

Did you know we have an exhibition dedicated to dynamic American sports figures? A lively combination of portraits, artifacts, memorabilia, and video make up the, "Champions" exhibition on the third floor. Everything from tennis, hockey, golf, and of course, football. 🏈
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Image Credit: Joe Namath by Ben Ross, 1965. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution. © Ben Ross.

"Nearly 60 works of art from the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery are coming to Pittsburgh as part of a dynamic n...
01/30/2020
Smithsonian’s Portraits of Pittsburgh: Works from the National Portrait Gallery

"Nearly 60 works of art from the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery are coming to Pittsburgh as part of a dynamic new exhibition at the Senator John Heinz History Center."

Nearly 60 works of art from the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery are coming to Pittsburgh as part of a dynamic new exhibition at the Senator John Heinz History Center

The daughter of a free black woman and a prominent Englishman, Mary Peake was educated in Alexandria, Virginia. While su...
01/29/2020

The daughter of a free black woman and a prominent Englishman, Mary Peake was educated in Alexandria, Virginia. While supporting herself as a dressmaker, she secretly began teaching from her home, instructing African Americans of all ages. Her work as an educator gained the attention of Reverend Lew C. Lockwood, a representative of the American Missionary Association, who eventually wrote her biography, of which this portrait serves as the frontispiece. #BecauseOfHerStory

Learn more about women's contributions to America: s.si.edu/2tTWsbD
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Image Credit: Mary S. Peake, the Colored Teacher at Fortress Monroe by Frederick W. Halpin, 1863. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution.

Kehinde Wiley's portrait of Barack Obama will be on view at the Portrait Gallery until mid-May of 2021 before beginning ...
01/28/2020
Kehinde Wiley: ‘I took the DNA of William Morris and created hybrids’

Kehinde Wiley's portrait of Barack Obama will be on view at the Portrait Gallery until mid-May of 2021 before beginning it's tour around the nation. #ObamaPortraitsTour

Best known for his portrait of Barack Obama, the artist’s first solo London show is inspired by a tale of insanity and the women of Dalston

"Photographer Rick Chapman’s 2007 portrait of Bryant embodies this singularity. Then just 29, the shooting guard had 'al...
01/28/2020
Smithsonian Historians Reflect on Kobe Bryant's Legacy as His Portrait Goes on View

"Photographer Rick Chapman’s 2007 portrait of Bryant embodies this singularity. Then just 29, the shooting guard had 'already had this really tremendous impact on basketball,' says Gwendolyn DuBois Shaw, senior historian at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, where the selenium-toned print is now on view in a special “In Memoriam” display."

A 2007 photograph of the N.B.A. All-Star offers visitors a chance to pay their respects

The Obama portraits on going on the road across the U.S.! #ObamaPortraitsTour
01/23/2020
Obama Portraits to Tour the Nation

The Obama portraits on going on the road across the U.S.! #ObamaPortraitsTour

The works by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald will make their way to five cities from June 2021 through May 2022, including a stop at the Brooklyn Museum.

"Portraits of the World: Denmark" is on view now. Don't miss the chance to see the monumental piece on loan from the the...
01/17/2020
Rare Chance in 2020 to See This Classic Danish Masterwork

"Portraits of the World: Denmark" is on view now. Don't miss the chance to see the monumental piece on loan from the the Danish Museum of National History, Frederiksborg Castle!

At the Portrait Gallery, a new show gets at the visual heart of competitive camaraderie roiling within artist colonies

🎂 Happy birthday to creator and original star of, "Hamilton: An American Musical," Lin-Manuel Miranda! 🎈This portrait of...
01/16/2020

🎂 Happy birthday to creator and original star of, "Hamilton: An American Musical," Lin-Manuel Miranda! 🎈

This portrait of Miranda, in costume for his title role in "Hamilton," is one of several photographs that Mark Seliger took for the June 2016 cover story of Rolling Stone. See this image on view in our, "Recent Acquisitions" exhibition on the first floor.

Image Credit: Lin-Manuel Miranda by Mark Seliger, 2016 (printed 2018). Acquisition made possible through the Smithsonian Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center.

The deadline is quickly approaching for submissions to the Teen Portrait Competition. Know a budding photographer betwee...
01/10/2020

The deadline is quickly approaching for submissions to the Teen Portrait Competition. Know a budding photographer between the ages of 13 and 17? The winning submission will be displayed at the Portrait Gallery!

Deadline: Jan. 15. More info: s.si.edu/33ln54K

01/07/2020
Smithsonian

Smithsonian

Due to inclement weather, all our D.C.-area museums will close at 3 p.m. today. The @NationalZoo will close at 1 p.m.

Everyone loves a good story. “Her Story: A Century of Women Writers” will highlight 24 noted women writers from the last...
01/06/2020
Race, resistance and revolution: what to expect from US art in 2020

Everyone loves a good story. “Her Story: A Century of Women Writers” will highlight 24 noted women writers from the last one hundred years who are represented in the Portrait Gallery’s collection. Exhibition opens July 10. #BecauseOfHerStory

In the months leading up to the election, museums and galleries across America will host a number of impassioned and political exhibitions

Recovering from your New Year's celebration? Jump start your 2020 with a visit to the Portrait Gallery. We'll be open to...
01/01/2020

Recovering from your New Year's celebration? Jump start your 2020 with a visit to the Portrait Gallery. We'll be open today from 11:30-7 p.m. ✨
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Image Credit: "Opening Night Party of 'The Member of the Wedding'" by Ruth Orkin, 1950. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution. © Ruth Orkin.

Thank you to all our visitors, both online and in the museum, for making 2019 a memorable year for art and history! From...
12/31/2019

Thank you to all our visitors, both online and in the museum, for making 2019 a memorable year for art and history! From opening, "Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence" to celebrating 47 artists in the #Outwin2019, we have sought to tell the ever-evolving and diverse story of America through portraiture.

We are excited for the new year's exhibitions, family programs, and events so hope to see you in 2020! #myNPG

Address

8th And F Streets, NW
Washington D.C., DC
20001

Nearest Metro Stop: Gallery Place-Chinatown (Red, Yellow and Green lines). Take the Arena exit at 7th and F Streets. The DC Circulator also serves the museum's Penn Quarter neighborhood.

Opening Hours

Monday 11:30 - 19:00
Tuesday 11:30 - 19:00
Wednesday 11:30 - 19:00
Thursday 11:30 - 19:00
Friday 11:30 - 19:00
Saturday 11:30 - 19:00
Sunday 11:30 - 19:00

Telephone

(202) 633-8300

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Comments

Excellent lecture...
Ava DuVernay just tweeted about my work in the National Portrait Gallery’s Outwin 2019 exhibition. #georgestinneyjr
We had to cut our visit short, as my wife needed a feminine hygene product and all of your machines were empty or broken. Is that acceptable by the Smithonean? Why are they not free? Are you actively discouraging female visitors?
FOUND ANTIQUE Painting of Daniel Boone Brother Edward and a Drawing of Sarah Boone
Over one thousand esoteric stone portraits of early North Americans have been posted at Facebook.com/stonespeaker or 'Stone Art of Ancient Oregon. Many of the artifacts were discovered beneath Missoula Flood deposits that are over 12,800 years old.
The vast art collection!
Oxygen users are not welcome at the #Smithsonian museum. My oxygen is on my back, where it is designed to go. (Note the Inogen is also FAA approved) AFTER going through security at the entrance, and note, they helped my put my oxygen unit back on, as I also have a broken arm. The men at the ADA accessible entrance security were kind and polite and helpful. It was the 8+ different security in the galleries that all began harassing then called a white shirt officer who suggested a wheelchair instead of oxygen??!! Ummm really??!! How does a wheelchair help give me oxygen to breathe?? How can I carry a 15lb oxygen machine with only one hand that has no purse strap or hand grips?!?? And if oxygen is not permitted, then why is it not on the list of items not allowed??!
Bravo!!!
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