The Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden has confirmed the acquisition of artworks proposed by curators and approved by its board that help evolve the understanding of contemporary art history. Since November 2019, the museum has acquired works by more than 60 boundary-breaking contemporary artists—such seminal artists as John Akomfrah, Deana Lawson, James Luna, Sondra Perry, Christina Quarles, Tschabalala Self and Lee Ufan. The works span a broad mix of art-making media, including painting, sculpture, photography, film, installation and mixed-media assemblage. These curatorially guided recent additions represent continuity with the past by honoring Joseph H. Hirshhorn’s foundational 1966 gift while addressing the museum’s mission to acknowledge global and diverse perspectives.
“Acquiring work for the national museum of modern and contemporary art is an honor,” said Melissa Chiu, director of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. “Through these recent acquisitions, we hope to showcase the international through-lines and diverse range of art by the artists who are shaping the course of art history and identify future needs of the permanent collection to accurately represent the 21st century.”
Joseph H. Hirshhorn’s 1966 gift laid the foundation for a national museum of modern art, which opened on the National Mall in 1974 with treasures by respected artists, including Alberto Giacometti, Barbara Hepworth, Jacob Lawrence, Louise Nevelson and Isamu Noguchi. The Hirshhorn builds on this legacy by broadening its holdings of late-20th- and 21st-century art to reflect a more expansive and inclusive global art narrative, highlighting voices that have long argued for greater visibility.
Artists whose works have entered the Hirshhorn’s permanent collection since November 2019 include:
Other artists whose works were acquired for the Hirshhorn’s collection between November 2019–May 2022 are:
The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the national museum of modern and contemporary art and a leading voice for 21st-century art and culture. Part of the Smithsonian, the Hirshhorn is located prominently on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Its holdings encompass one of the most important collections of postwar programs on the art of our time—free to all. The museum is open daily, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m., and its outdoor sculpture garden is open daily, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. For more information, visit hirshhorn.si.edu. Follow the museum on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.
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Landmark Acquisitions Reflect the Hirshhorn’s Expansive Curatorial Mission and Programming – Smithsonian Institution