National Portrait Gallery Event and Exhibitons


  • National Portrait Gallery 8th St NW & F St NW Washington, DC 20001

Join the National Portrait Gallery is celebrating all of their FotoWeek events and exhibitions!

In the Groove: Jazz Portraits by Herman Leonard

“In the Groove: Jazz Portraits by Herman Leonard” from the museum’s collection features Leonard’s iconic images of jazz legends such as Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Billie Holiday, Thelonious Monk and Sarah Vaughan. Leonard’s extraordinary photographs are widely regarded as the definitive portraits of many of the 20th century’s greatest jazz artists. Enthralled by the music and those who made it, Leonard began haunting the New York’s jazz clubs after opening his first studio in Greenwich Village in 1948. Armed with his Speed Graphic camera, Leonard made images that captured the very essence of a live jazz performance. (On view through June 4, 2017)

The Outwin 2016: American Portraiture Today

“The Outwin 2016: American Portraiture Today,” an exhibition resulting from the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition, features works from 43 artists from across the nation. Of the pieces, 19 out of 43 pieces in the show are photographs; the others works are sculptures, mixed-media pieces, paintings and drawings. (On view through Jan. 8, 2017)

One Life: Babe Ruth

American baseball legend Babe Ruth was an icon and media sensation. Before the commercialization of sports superstars became commonplace, Ruth’s name and image fueled a marketing frenzy. “One Life: Babe Ruth” highlights his memorable persona in a selection of historic prints, photographs and personal paraphernalia representing “the Babe” both as a Yankee slugger and a national celebrity. Historian James Barber is the curator of the show. (On view through May 21, 2017)

Double Take: Daguerreian Portrait Pairs

Highlighting the depth of the National Portrait Gallery’s early photography collection, “Double Take: Daguerreian Portrait Pairs” showcases 14 daguerreotypes—two portraits each—of seven subjects: George Bancroft, Jenny Lind, Zachary Taylor, Frederick Douglass, Jefferson Davis, Daniel Webster, and John Quincy Adams. By featuring two portraits of each famous sitter, the exhibition will encourage visitors to consider the ways in which various daguerreotypists approached the same subject and how different the results could be. (On view through June 4, 2017)

Lincoln’s Contemporaries

Who were Abraham Lincoln’s contemporaries? They included many fascinating people beyond the politicians and military leaders of the Civil War. “Lincoln’s Contemporaries” features Mathew Brady’s portraits of 20 celebrities—from showman P.T. Barnum and inventor Samuel Morse to musician Teresa Carreño and clergyman Henry Ward Beecher—who reflect the diversity of American intellectual and cultural life during Lincoln’s presidency.