Several of you have asked “what say ye D.C. Docent, for summer art extravaganzas not to be missed?” Not really, it was only one of you that asked and your vernacular was quite plain. But it did get me thinking, it’s never too early to start surveying the summer landscape. Here are my preliminary picks, but keep in mind that several private galleries have yet to release their late summer line-ups:
- Diebenkorn’s Ocean Park Series at The Corcoran - Scale, abstraction, stillness, muted tones and oceanic themes make for the kind of California Dreaming you only find on dappled, breezy Rock Creek Park picnics.
- Ai Weiwei at The Hirshhorn & Freer Sackler - Gigantism, interconnectivity, political dissidence, stone and wood translate into A Staring at the Sun kind of intensity where questioning authority, jail time and occupying something don’t seem so bad.
- Jasper Johns at The Phillips Collection - Printmaking, bold colors, graphics and pop vibe mean that if you’re wearing Ray Bans, an upturned collar and quoting the Beats or John Hughes, it ain’t gonna be such a Cruel Summer.
- The Art of Video Games at The American Art Museum - Unless you read my previous post on this show, be prepared for stammering, yammering, pixels, plug & plays and enough nerdy amusement to make you jam out like this.
- Joan Miro at The National Gallery of Art & The Kreeger - The geometry of surprise, think minimalist whimsy, but with an underlying lesson of more than basic shapes and primary colors is what you might hear in your Radiohead.
- Cynthia Connolly at Civilian Art Projects - Spare, clean, slightly gritty black and white images evoke the sense of Standing on a Beach.
- Leo Villareal at Conner Contemporary - Disappear here with diodes, pure color, and prismatic flashes of the future L’Estate.