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Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM)
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The Smithsonian American Art Museum is dedicated to collecting, understanding, and enjoying American art. The Museum celebrates the extraordinary creativity of artists whose works reflect the American experience and global connections.
The Smithsonian American Art Museum is dedicated to collecting, understanding, and enjoying American art. The Museum celebrates the extraordinary creativity of artists whose works reflect the American experience and global connections.

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Ralph Fasanella’s large, colorful paintings reflect the struggles of a tumultuous era. They were not meant to be rarefied works of fine art, but rather a practical means of conveying messages about right and wrong, raising consciousness, and inspiring solidarity among his working-class peers. Independently, he developed an astute, accessible, and empowering style and became known for his iconic admonition: “Lest We Forget”—an impassioned plea to remember the sacrifices of our forebears.

View a selection of his works online at http://americanart.si.edu/exhibitions/online/fasanella/.

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Join Marc Fasanella, son of the artist, and Leslie Umberger, curator of folk and self-taught art at the American Art Museum, as they shed light on Ralph Fasanella's life, family, and artistic career. Live webcast of their discussion on Friday, May 2, at 6:30 p.m. EST: http://s.si.edu/1n6weHe

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Artworks from the American Art Museum that celebrate nature, in honor of Earth Day: http://www.pinterest.com/americanartpin/earth-day/ #EarthDay

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Abstraction and spirituality are intimately entwined in the delicate works of Mark Tobey. "Canticle," the title of this 1954 painting, refers to liturgical hymns from the bible. Tobey acknowledged that the abstract harmony of music was an important source of inspiration: "When I play the piano for several hours, everything is clarified in my visual imagination afterwards." The intricate pattern of delicate marks that animate the surface (critics called it "white writing") was inspired by the artist's study of Arabic and Japanese calligraphy.

Mark Tobey, "Canticle," 1954, casein on paper, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Sara Roby Foundation. Now on view at American Art as part of "Modern American Realism: The Sara Roby Foundation Collection": http://s.si.edu/RobyReal #RobyReal
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April Gornik's dramatic 1992 painting "Virga," now on view at the American Art Museum, takes its name from the phenomena of rain that falls but evaporates before reaching the ground.

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Artist & museum visitor Cory Oberndorfer could not help but notice our outsized tea bags & ceramic hot dogs.

Do you have a favorite piece in our collection? We'd love to hear about it!

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"…there are times I've been the first woman a bandleader has ever hired. And from time to time I still hear from audience members that they've never, or rarely, seen a woman play jazz saxophone." -Leigh Pilzer

Hear more from Pilzer and learn about the Washington Women in Jazz Festival Quintet, performing on the Take 5! stage this Thursday, March 20th from 5-8 p.m. in the Kogod Courtyard.

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Good morning! The Smithsonian American Art Museum and the National Portrait Gallery will both be opening on time at 11:30 a.m. today, March 17. The National Air and Space Museum will also be open at 10 a.m.

Due to the snow storm, all the other Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo will be CLOSED.
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