The National Portrait Gallery is currently exhibiting the work of Elaine de Kooning in the show Elaine de Kooning: Portraits, organized by Brandon Brame Fortune, the Portrait Gallery’s chief curator and senior curator of painting and sculpture. Elaine was an active member of the Abstract Expressionists in New York, a group known for a style defined by vivid colors, spontaneity and emotive strokes of thick, layered paint on monumental canvases. She married fellow Abstract Expressionist Willem de Kooning in 1943. However, Elaine’s work was not solely abstract, in fact, the majority of her work is representational in nature—a style that could be categorized as Figurative Expressionism.
Month: August 2015
Familiar with its waters, I was delighted when an early chart of the Chesapeake Bay, entitled Map of part of Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware of 1861, appeared in my cataloging queue. But then who doesn’t like looking at old maps? Getting absorbed in what is fanciful, long-gone or merely changed, and finding remnants of the well-known from a long association with the landscape. And reading any map on paper doesn’t happen every day now, let alone a very rare one.
Galileo Galilei, one of the most famous and important scientists of all time, a man whose ideas survived Roman Inquisition and house arrest, is going up against Jackson Pollock, Langston Hughes and others to determine who is the “Most Seriously Amazing” at the Smithsonian. In this second annual contest, units from around the Smithsonian have picked their most remarkable objects and are asking the public to vote for the best of the Smithsonian.
This post was written by Adrian Vaagenes, intern in the National Museum of American History Library.
One of the things that’s wonderful about a library is the chance it provides to get lost down a rabbit hole, to discover something or someone you never heard about before, and bring it back up to light. One such rabbit hole I discovered last week started while shelving books at the National Museum of American History Library. I ran across a title that caught my eye, Sinbad of the Coast Guard . Written in 1945, the book chronicles the real life adventures of a dog who became the mascot for the USS Campbell during World War II. Coincidentally, tomorrow August 4th, marks the 225th anniversary of the creation of the “Revenue Marine”, a maritime service to enforce customs laws which would later become the Coast Guard.