Installation view of Alison Saar’s Undone (2012), featured in The Sky’s the Limit at the National Museum of Women in the Arts; Photo by Jennifer Hughes, courtesy of NMWA
The National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) reopened on October 21 after a two-year renovation. The museum now offers renovated galleries with innovative presentations, inaugural exhibitions, and a transformed building.
NMWA is the first museum in the world that is solely dedicated to championing women through the arts and advocates for better representation of women artists.
NMWA’s reopening highlights new works, with nearly 40% of the works on view being exhibited for the first time at NMWA and 70 of those works being from the museum’s own collection.
The renovation is the museum’s first full renovation since its first opening in 1987, which includes exterior restoration as well as expanded gallery spaces. The project was designed by Baltimore-based architectural firm Sandra Vicchio & Associates. The team restored the roof and grand brick-and-limestone exterior in accordance with the D.C. Historic Preservation Office. They made updates to the Great Hall and mezzanine, preserving the iconic spaces while improving functionality for art displays, programs and events. Gallery spaces are enlarged by more than 15%. Structural supports concealed above ceilings and within gallery walls can now accommodate the size and weight of monumental sculptures.
NMWA’s inaugural major exhibition, The Sky’s the Limit, features contemporary sculptures and immersive installations by 13 international and US-based artists. The exhibition showcases 33 sculptures dating from 2003 to 2023 by artists Rina Banerjee, Sonya Clark, Petah Coyne, Beatriz Milhazes, Cornelia Parker, Mariah Robertson, Alison Saar, Davina Semo, Shinique Smith, Johanna Unzueta, Joana Vasconcelos, Ursula von Rydingsvard and Yuriko Yamaguchi. The exhibition is accompanied by an illustrated catalog and will be on view through February 25, 2024.
NMWA has already announced a full schedule of events and workshops for the fall. NMWA offers free admission days on the first Sunday and second Wednesday of each month, and details on ticket pricing for regular admission dates can be found here.