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Explore Must See Museums!

Jan 07, 2016 04:00PM ● By Melissa Lauren

The National Museum of the American Indian building has a distinctive curvilinear form, evoking a wind-sculpted rock formation. The building is aligned perfectly to the cardinal directions and the center point of the Capitol dome. The museum houses exhibits that refelect the Native universe.

By Melissa Lauren

Crazy Quilt with Initial “M” c. 1885 
Origin: Baltimore, Maryland. Gift of 
Minnie K. Minderlein. Photo courtesy 
of The Baltimore Museum of Art

January is a wonderful time of year to go museum hopping! We are so lucky to have such spectacular exhibits on display in the nation’s capital as well as Baltimore. Have an adventure! Learn something new that sparks your interest while stimulating your senses. Here are the Editor’s Picks of must see museums for you to enjoy while you’re out and about.


Baltimore Museum of Art
Now through June 19, 2016
Free – 443-573-1700 –
Among the many recent additions to the BMA’s late 20th-century textile collection are five stunning quilts created by professional artists who chose to express themselves with cloth and thread. These intricate art quilts include examples of works by the foremost proponent of the art quilt, Michael James. His stunning work plays with color transitions and the transformation of space. The exhibit also features elaborately pieced painted quilts.

A portion of the Berlin Wall is on display at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. 
Photo courtesy of Newseum.


Gallery Newseum
Now through February 1, 2017
$14-23 – 202-292-6453 –
The Berlin Wall Gallery tells the gripping story of how news and information helped topple a closed and oppressive society. Featured are eight 12-foot-high concrete sections of the original wall – the largest display of unaltered portions of the wall outside of Germany. A three-story East German guard tower that loomed near Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin’s best-known East-West crossing stands nearby.


Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
Now through November 30, 2016
Free – 202-633-2214 –
Art of the Airport Tower takes viewers on a photographic journey to airports in the United States and around the globe. Smithsonian photographer Carolyn Russo explores the varied forms and functions of air traffic control towers throughout aviation history and interprets them as monumental abstractions, symbols of cultural expression, and testimonies of technological change. The images bring a heightened awareness to the simple beauty of the airport tower and a call for their preservation in the airport landscape. Collectively, these towers represent many countries and cultures. They play a pivotal role in the vast network of air traffic control technology that brings people of the world closer together.


Baltimore Museum of Industry
Now through January 31, 2019
$7-12 (Free admission for children 6 and under) – 410-727-4808 –
Game on! Learn how to create a video game. This interactive exhibition allows visitors to immerse themselves in the exciting process of creating their very own video game. Video Game Wizards provides an interactive environment where visitors can explore how their talents, skills, and passions could lead to a career in the interactive entertainment industry. The exhibit’s six stations provide an opportunity for visitors to meet game makers and learn about their roles, while making and customizing a game using the skills demonstrated at each station. Visitors will experience the collaborative process of video game development at every point in the exhibition. At the end, visitors are able to play their own game and share it on the exhibition’s website with family and friends, and will be able to play any of the games developed at the exhibition.


National Museum of the American Indian
Now through January 31, 2016
Free – 202-633-1000 –
The 120-seat circular Lelawi Theater offers a dazzling multimedia experience designed to prepare museum-goers for the themes and messages they will encounter during their museum visit. A 13-minute presentation, titled Who Are We immerses viewers in the vibrancy and diversity of contemporary Native life and explores the strength that different communities across the hemisphere derive from their connections to land, religion, traditional knowledge, self-government, and self-expression from a Native perspective. The film repeats on the half hour.


National Geographic Museum
Now through March 27, 2016
$25 – 202-857-7588
National Geographic’s Pristine Seas project searches for the last truly wild places in the ocean, remote areas untouched by human activity. Led by Explorer-in-Residence Dr. Enric Sala, the team explores, conducts scientific research, and makes powerful films to motivate world leaders to protect these last pristine places. While the ocean covers nearly 70% of our planet, we protect only two percent. The goal of Pristine Seas is to help protect 10% of the world’s oceans by 2020. The exhibit features stunning photography and behind-the-scenes expedition images from the Arctic to the tropics as well as an immersive underwater video wall.


Jewish Museum of Maryland
Now through January 18, 2016
$4-10 (Free admission for children 4 and under) – 410-732-6400
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Paul Simon: Words and Music is on the road during a nationwide tour. Paul Simon is a two-time inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, a winner of 12 Grammy Awards (three of which were albums of the year) and a 2003 recipient of the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award for his work as half of the duo, Simon and Garfunkel. He was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2002 and was named as one of Time Magazine’s “100 People Who Shape Our World” in 2006. In 2007, Simon was awarded the first annual Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. The exhibit offers real insight into Paul Simon’s creative process. It documents the evolution of lyrics to songs like “The Boxer” and the album Graceland. Even one of his guitars is on view. The exhibit covers all genres of Simon’s work: folk, rock, and world music.