Results 1-10of 18 Reviews
NY, New York
April 17, 2005
From journal Washington, D.C.
February 25, 2009
From journal The Great Indoors
February 5, 2006
From journal Non-Smithsonian Museums Around DC
, Virginia, Turkey
April 11, 2004
Although it was early, around 6pm, (the concert starts at 7pm), most of the nice seats were taken. The first rows of seats in front of the piano were reserved, and most of the other seats did not have any view due to big columns. My husband found ourselves two good chairs with a partial view, and we waited in excitement for the concert.
Ruth Laredo, "America's First Lady of the Piano" according to the New York Daily Press played that night. Her program included pieces from Schumann, Beethoven, Scriabin, Rachmaninoff and Ravel. She started the concert with four pieces of Schumann from Phantasiestucke , Op. 12 (Des Abends, Aufschwung, Warum?, In der Nacht). She continued with Ludwig van Beethoven's Sonata No. 23 in F Minor ("Appassionata”). She took a break and after the break gave us brief information on Scriabin who was a peer of Rachmaninoff. She passionately played Poeme, Op. 23, No. 1 and Guirlandes, Op. 73, No. 1 from Scriabin.
After the intermission the program stated that five preludes from Rachmaninoff and La Valse from Ravel would be played. However, we had to drive back home, so we left after the intermission.
It is a lovely way to spend a Sunday evening in the capital city. And I have to add that admission is free for all. I would suggest that you arrive early and reserve good seats or talk to the attendants to see if there would be any seats available at the reserved section.
From journal Spring in Washington DC
March 27, 2003
West Building's main floor takes you chronologically through the history of painting from room to room. Some of the highlights for me are Salvador Dali's last supper, the impressionist collection, the collection of American Painters, and a set of paintings entitled "the journey of life". There is also a DaVinci, and a lot of beautiful works.
There are also sculpture galleries with a number of wonderful pieces, and the central fountain, with Mercury, is also impressive. There is a lot of interpretive information available, both in the bookstore and at the information desk, and in the various galleries. There is a fountain court at one end where free chamber concerts are held on Sunday evenings (the line forms early). Both main floor and lower galleries also provide space for special shows.
The east building is a big, breezy building designed by noted architect I.M. Pei, who also did the Louvre pyramid among other notable buildings. It is a soaring place with bridges that fly and allow you unusual views of the art, like looking down on a Calder mobile. There is a small permanent collection, but this musuem houses a lot of special exhibitions. The art here is not traditional.
Amenities here include two different museum shops. There is a large museum shop with prints, gifts, and jewelry in the West Building basement, along with a Garden Court restaurant, which is a lovely place to sit and eat. Between the lower floors of the two museums is a walkway with a large museum shop (actually two - there is a children's museum shop and an adult one). This one focuses more on books and other things, and has few prints. Here you will also find a sizeable cafeteria and gelato bar, and a large manmade waterfall, part of the I.M. Pei design that spreads light and delight all through the walkway.
Part of the walk can be via a moving walkway, which on the East side drops you at yet another small gift shop, usually selling items connected with special exhibits in the East Building.
And it's all free.
The closest metro is probably Judiciary square on the red line, but Archives/Navy Memorial and Smithsonian are among the other metro stops close to the National Gallery.
Their web site gives a lot of information, and pictures of some of the collection, at nga.gov.
From journal Wonderful Washington DC
New York City, New York
July 12, 2002
From journal The Smithsonian Museums on the Mall
Cinnaminson, New Jersey
February 13, 2002
The National Gallery is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5.p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m, closed on December 25 and January 1. The National Gallery’s own exposition is not very large, but the East Wing has a Matisse collection on the top floor. This building also has a large bookshop in the basement and a movie theater on the 3rd floor where they show elite movies. The entrance to the East Building is on 4th Street. The building is modern but its architecture is not as unusual or unique as, say, the Solomon Guggenheim museum in NYC.
In 2000, the East Wing was the place of pilgrimage for art lovers because it housed the Art Nouveau exhibit. This exhibit was truly great because you could see the influence of this art movement throughout the whole of Europe and the US, in jewelry by Tiffany and Lalique, furniture, sculpture, paintings, architecture. Art Nouveau 1890-1914 was a new style that was an attempt to create an international style of decoration. It was very much influenced by Japanese and Chinese art, you can see that influence in the simplicity and beauty of design. Paris World Fair of 1900 announced Art Nouveau as a new style in architecture and design. The main element present in all creations of this time is nature – dragonflies and butterflies on vases, broches; flowers, trees were the inspiration of most images. Part of this exhibit was also Gustav Klimt’s paintings. Next door to the Art Nouveau exhibit you could also check out the impressionists paintings by most of the famous French impressionists that you can think of.
Current exhibitions include "German Expressionist Paintings from the Saltzman Family Collection," which includes works by Max Beckmann, Erich Heckel, Wassily Kandinsky, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Franz Marc, Emil Nolde, and others. There is also an exhibit "Small French Paintings" that has works by Pierre Bonnard, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Henri Matisse, and Camille Pissarro.
From journal A private tour of Washington, DC
New York, New York
February 8, 2001
From journal Posh, Pre-Inaugural DC
Washington, District of Columbia
November 29, 2000
From journal One of the Greatest Cities in the World
London, United Kingdom
April 6, 2008
At the time of its completion, the West Building was the largest marble structure in the world and even from the outside it towers above its subjects, impressing in the same way that London’s British Museum does.
Feeling a little intimidated by the size of the gallery, we picked up a very handy leaflet that identifies West Building highlights that can be covered in under an hour. Normally I wouldn’t want to rush through such a spectacular collection but we still had the East Building to consider and wanted to squeeze in a visit to the National Air and Space Museum across the way before closing time at 5.30pm.
The leaflet highlighted twelve must-see works, including pieces by da Vinci, Raphael, Rubens, Vermeer, Monet and Cezanne. Audio tours are available for $5 and guided tours run throughout the day focussing on particular collections.
Opened 37 years later in 1978, the East Building is home to the gallery’s modern art and sculpture collections. Here you can find permanent installations of work by Henri Matisse, Alexander Calder and Sol LeWitt. Connecting the two buildings is a cavernous underground concourse level where the busy gallery café and bookshop are located.
The East Building has an obvious modern and brighter feel to it and is also quite a bit busier than the West side. The temporary Edward Hopper exhibition was clearly a big draw and the queue to get in was particularly long. It’s worth checking ahead of time on permanent and temporary exhibitions as some of them have limited opening times or may require passes.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that if you check in your bag in the West Building as we did, it’s quite a long walk back to retrieve it after visiting the East Building. If you only want to do a similar "Highlights" tour you still need about a minimum of two hours to visit both buildings. If you have more time though, it would be easy to dedicate an entire day to the National Gallery and adjacent Sculpture Garden.
From journal The Two-Day Tourist in Washington DC