has a long list of exciting exhibition-related programs coming up this spring, including artist talks, scholarly lectures, gallery discussions, After Hours and film screenings. Among the artists and guest speakers featured are Walead Beshty, Ori Gersht, David Polonsky, Gary Simmons and James Turrell, along with Louise Bourgeois experts Donald Kuspit and Valerie Fletcher, as well as various local artists, scholars and experts for Friday Gallery Talks.
Tuesday, Feb. 17; 7 p.m.
Meet the Artist: Ori Gersht
Join London-based Israeli artist Ori Gersht for our first Meet the Artist talk of the season. Gersht will lead an informal discussion of his photographic series and film work in the museum's Lerner Room. Two of his films, "Pomegranate" and "The Forest" (both 2006), are currently on view in the Black Box. This program is free and presented in conjunction with the Embassy of Israel. Meet the Artist is made possible through the generosity of the Steven and Heather Mnuchin Foundation.
Thursday, Feb. 26; 7 p.m.
Lecture: Donald Kuspit on The Phallic Woman: Conflict and Fragmentation in Louise Bourgeois' Conception of the Female Body
Donald Kuspit, professor of art history and philosophy at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and contributing editor at "Artforum," discusses the tensions between the phallic and the womanly in Bourgeois' work and interprets the artist's understanding of the nature of the female body and the character of female selfhood. This program is free.
Sunday, March 8; 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Film: Louise Bourgeois: The Spider, the Mistress and the Tangerine (2008)
Shot over a period of 15 years by Marion Cajori and Amei Wallach, this recently released documentary records Bourgeois ruminating on the deep emotional and psychological roots of her work, along with footage of her home, studio and works. Critic/curators Robert Storr and Deborah Wye, as well as the artist's son, Jean-Louis Bourgeois, also offer insights into Bourgeois' complicated psyche and vibrant imagination. This program is free.
Thursday, Mar. 12; 7 p.m.
James T. Demetrion Lecture: James Turrell
Since 1979, James Turrell has been working with light and space on an enormous scale, turning the 400,000-year-old dormant volcano near Flagstaff, Ariz., into a work of art. Roden Crater is a kind of celestial observatory with spaces that engage the viewer with the light of the sun, moon and stars. Richard Andrews, president of the Skystone Foundation, which administers the crater project, joins Turrell for a discussion of the artist's career, particularly the development of the massive undertaking that is Roden Crater. This program is free and made possible by the Friends of Jim and Barbara Demetrion Endowment Fund, established in 2001 to celebrate Jim Demetrion's seventeen-year tenure as the Hirshhorn's second director.
Thursday, March 19; 5:30 p.m.
Film: Garden Cycles Bike Tour: New Faces from the Farm (2008)
Washington-based 20-somethings Lara Sheets, Liz Tylander and Kat Shiffler biked from Mount Pleasant in Washington, D.C. to Montreal, visiting inner-city gardens, rooftop vegetable plots and suburban farms. The cyclers introduce this documentary of their adventure. The screening is at Dumbarton Oaks, 1703 32nd Street N.W., and is presented in conjunction with the Environmental Film Festival of the Nation's Capital and Dumbarton Oaks Garden and Landscape Studies Program of Harvard University. This program is free.
Thursday, March 26; 8 p.m.
An Evening with David Polonsky
Award-winning Israeli illustrator/animator David Polonsky discusses his work as art director and lead artist on Ari Folman's film "Waltz with Bashir" (2008), an animated documentary that relates Folman's recollections of serving as a soldier during the 1982 war in Lebanon. This program is free and presented in conjunction with the Embassy of Israel.
Friday, March 27; 8 p.m. to midnight
Video artist Ricardo Rivera and the Klip Collective, whose large-scale projections can be seen around the world, joins the Philadelphia-based Lumia Ensemble and DJ Radar to transform the outdoor plaza into an all-night, 360-degree audio-visual immersion experience. Inside the galleries, join Hirshhorn curators for late-night tours of "Louise Bourgeois" and "Strange Bodies." Tickets will be on sale at www.hirshhorn.si.edu.
Thursday, April 16; 7 p.m.
Lecture: Valerie Fletcher on Louise Bourgeois: The Past as Present
Valerie Fletcher, senior curator of modern art and Hirshhorn organizing curator for "Louise Bourgeois," discusses the idea of "the past as present" as it relates to the artist. Bourgeois' artworks are largely inspired by her autobiographical past yet exist as a form of catharsis in the present. They also form a dialogue between traditional methods/ideas/forms from past centuries of art making and innovative contemporary methods/ideas/forms of our own time. This program is free.
Thursday, April 23; 8 p.m.
Film: The Universe of Keith Haring (2007)
Christina Clausen's documentary reviews the short life and times of Keith Haring, a friend of Andy Warhol and a social phenomenon himself, "connecting the gay scene to hip-hop, Madonna to museum culture, the democratic street to the rarefied art world." This program is free.
Sunday, April 26; 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Film: La Riviere Gentille (2007)
In this final documentary from a trilogy by filmmaker Brigitte Cornand, 96-year-old Louise Bourgeois is seen in the New York home she has not left for more than a decade. Alert, witty, tender and intense, the artist provides a rare glimpse of her integration of art and life. This program is free.
Friday, May 1; 12:30 p.m.
In Conversation: Walead Beshty and Evelyn Hankins
Join Los Angeles-based artist Walead Beshty and Hirshhorn curator Evelyn Hankins for a lunchtime conversation about the latest project in the Hirshhorn's "Directions" series. Beshty's project reconsiders the relationship between material practice and the modernist tropes of repetition, modularity and monumentality and features both color photograms and glass sculptures. This program is free.
Thursday, May 7; 8 p.m.
Film: Democracy Challenge Finalists
The U.S. Department of State gathered film industry collaborators to promote an international competition of three-minute short films that address the meaning of democracy. Judge for yourself which of these finalists best addressed this complex topic. This program is free.
Friday, May 8; 7 p.m.
Meet the Artist: Gary Simmons
New York-based artist Gary Simmons has been making "erasure" drawings since the early 1990s, when his studio occupied a former school. Simmons discusses this trademark process of using chalk on prepared panels that mimic schoolroom chalkboards, like in the Hirshhorn's "Blackboard (Triple-Eyed Maestro)" (1993), to confront the racial stereotypes that are still prevalent in today's popular culture. This program is free. Meet the Artist is made possible through the generosity of the Steven and Heather Mnuchin Foundation, with additional supoort from Henry Thaggert.
Thursday, May 14; 8 p.m.
Film: John Block: PALMS (2007)
Notorious German performance and video artist John Block was commissioned to create his first feature film by the Los Angeles gallery Redcat and the Schirn Kunsthalle gallery in Frankfurt, Germany. This noir-inspired melodrama follows two killers as they navigate the landscape of Southern California. Backdrops include old modern architecture by Rudolph Schindler and Richard Neutra, the expansive landscape of Joshua Tree National Park and seedy haunts in the sleepy town of Twentynine Palms, Calif. This program is free.
Every Friday; 12:30 p.m.
Friday Gallery Talks
Every Friday, museum staff as well as local artists, scholars and people from a variety of viewpoints share their insights with visitors and encourage dialogue about the works on view. These short discussions provide D.C. residents and tourists with the perfect opportunity to stop by for a bit of culture and to meet others interested in the arts. For the most up-to-date schedule and to download free podcasts of past Friday Gallery Talks and other programs, visit www.hirshhorn.si.edu. This program is free.