Excavations at Tell el-Amarna and 25 Other Smithsonian Associates Programs Streaming in April

Smithsonian Associates Streaming offers individual programs, multi-part courses, studio arts classes and virtual study tours produced by the world’s largest museum-based educational program.

Egyptologist Jacquelyn Williamson on site at Tell el-Amarna. Williamson will lead an all-day seminar for Smithsonian Associates on April 10 examining the site's latest discoveries.
Egyptologist Jacquelyn Williamson on site at Tell el-Amarna. Williamson will lead an all-day seminar for Smithsonian Associates on April 10 examining the site's latest discoveries.

Smithsonian Associates Streaming offers individual programs, multi-part courses, studio arts classes and virtual study tours produced by the world’s largest museum-based educational program.

Friday, April 2

Mantua: Power, Patronage, and the Renaissance: Mantua’s history is deeply connected to the Gonzaga dynasty. Their rule may have been tyrannical and warfare their principal occupation, but the family’s patronage brought into being some of the finest buildings and works of art of the Renaissance. Join art historian Elaine Ruffolo for a gaze into the dynamics of court life and the family who shaped a city. Smithsonian World Art History Certificate enrollees receive 1/2 credit. 12 p.m. ET $20-$25

Monday, April 5

In Their Own Words: Memoirs of Lives Recalled - Speak Memory by Vladmir Nabokov: Memorable autobiographies are powerful evocations not just of a person, but a time and place, vividly transporting us inside the world of another to experience it as they did. Documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson looks at a remarkable life recounted by Vladmir Nabokov in this session. 12 p.m. ET $20-$25

Tuesday, April 6

The Windsor Sisters: Elizabeth and Margaret: Author Andrew Morton explores the relationship between Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret, from the idyll of their cloistered early life, through the divergent paths they took following their father's death, and Elizabeth's ascension to the throne. 6:45 p.m. ET $25-$30

Thursday, April 8

Resetting the Table: Straight Talk About the Food We Grow and Eat: Robert Paarlberg, an adjunct professor of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and the author of Starved for Science, Food Politics, and The United States of Excess, offers a bold science-based response to misinformation about food production and organic, unprocessed foods. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

Saturday, April 10

Excavations at Tell el-Amarna: A Window Into Ancient Egypt: Excavations at the extraordinarily preserved desert city at Tell el-Amarna provide unmatched evidence of the daily life and religious practices of ancient Egyptians. Egyptologist Jacquelyn Williamson, a senior member of the Tell el-Amarna archaeological team, examines the latest discoveries at the site and what they reveal about the city founded as a center for Pharaoh Akhenaten’s monotheistic cult of the sun god Aten. Smithsonian World Art History Certificate enrollees receive 1/2 credit. 9:30 a.m. ET $80-$90

Sunday, April 11

Artists from the Kennedy Center Honors: Strings of Delights: In a 2-session series, join Sara Lukinson, a longtime filmmaker and writer for the Kennedy Center Honors, as she looks at the lives and careers of some performing arts legends and explores what made the work of these actors and musicians so moving, memorable, and exciting. This session focuses on string musicians. 3 p.m. ET $20-$25

Monday, April 12

Tapestry Weaving: Develop skills in a range of weaving techniques as you design and create a one-of-a kind miniature tapestry on a small-frame loom. 11:30 a.m. ET $185-$215

Lunchtime with a Curator: Decorative Arts Design Series: The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley in Winchester, Virginia, houses a great hidden treasure in the R. Lee Taylor Miniature Gallery, a collection of 14 houses and rooms furnished with more than 4,000 exquisite objects that represent more than 70 of the leading miniaturists. The museum’s Nick Powers joins curator Elizabeth Lay to share the story of this collection and close-up images of the marvelously detailed houses. Part of a 3-session Decorative Arts spring series. 12 p.m. ET $20-$25

Operation Moonglow: Project Apollo and the Politics of Space: The most expensive civilian scientific and technological program in U.S. history, Project Apollo symbolized the caliber of America’s capability in space exploration. On the 60th anniversary of the first human spaceflight, Smithsonian curator Teasel Muir-Harmony examines another aspect of the program: its role as a political strategy to foster a global community aligned with America’s Cold War interests. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

Tuesday, April 13

Art Journaling in Watercolor and Ink: Create a memorable way to record your travels, explorations, or just adventures through daily life. Learn all the basics of making personal illustrated art journals on paper with drawings in pen and watercolors. 10 a.m. ET $265-$295

Contemporary Glass Mosaics: Students of all skill levels are guided through the process of creating a contemporary glass mosaic as they master cutting techniques and embrace classical mosaic sensibilities. 6:30 p.m. ET $235-$265

The Loneliest Polar Bear: In this heartfelt story of survival, journalist Kale Williams views the world through the eyes of Nora, an abandoned polar bear cub. He explores the impact of climate change on wildlife and how we might develop a more respectful relationship with the natural world and our part in this fragile eco-system. 6:30 p.m. ET $20-$25

Chris Gardner: Finding Permission to Dream: Chris Gardner, author of The New York Times bestselling memoir The Pursuit of Happyness, talks about his real-life rags-to-riches story, and his blueprint for building a dream-come-true life—even during uncertainty. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

Wednesday, April 14

Disability Visibility: Intersectionality in Art, Design, and Museums: People living with disabilities are underrepresented in media, popular culture and art. Alice Wong, a disabled activist, media maker and research consultant, joins Beth Ziebarth, director of Access Smithsonian, artist Riva Lehrer and writer s.e. smith, to discuss intersectionality in art, design and the museum world through inclusive design and representation. 6:45 p.m. ET $15-$25

Coral reef biologist Dr. Rebecca Albright in the Steinhart Aquarium at the California Academy of Sciences–one of only a handful of places worldwide to be spawning corals in captivity. Albright will share an overview of challenges that reefs are currently facing and solutions that scientists are exploring in a streaming program on April 15. (Kat Whitney)

Thursday, April 15

Crystal Bridges: Art and Nature in Harmony: Surrounded by 120 acres of native Ozark forest, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, houses five centuries of American artworks from the colonial era to the present, with an emphasis on artists underrepresented in art history and conventional museum settings. Join a member of the educational staff for a look at this unique museum. Smithsonian World Art History Certificate enrollees receive 1/2 credit. 10 a.m. ET $25-$30

Coral Reefs: Creative Solutions for Oceans in Crisis: As the world continues to warm and the oceans acidify, there is no question that coral reefs are facing unprecedented struggle. Join coral reef biologist Rebecca Albright, assistant curator of Invertebrate Zoology and Patterson Scholar at the California Academy of Science, as she highlights opportunities to address this crisis. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

Friday, April 16

Creative Sculptural Composition: This class provides intermediate-level sculpture students the opportunity to advance from creating simple studies to developing and executing advanced compositions. 10 a.m. ET $250-$280

Saturday, April 17

The Black Arts Movement: In the 1960s and ’70s, the Black Arts Movement permeated rural and urban cities and towns in the U.S., drawing on the blues, jazz and Black folk culture and idiomatic expressions as its foundation. Michele L. Simms-Burton, scholar of African American and Africana studies, explores the cultural producers working in music, literature, art, theater, film and the press who defined the movement. 10 a.m. ET $80-$90

Oil and Acrylic Landscape Painting from Photographs: Students use photographs or images as references, while relying on personal interpretation to make their landscape paintings unique. 2:30 pm. ET $245-$275

Monday, April 19

President Joe Biden's First 100 Days: Joe Biden is facing one of the most challenging and polarized political environments ever experienced by a new president. How well has he been doing? Journalist and historian Ken Walsh looks at the high and low points of the new presidency so far as he reviews Biden’s first 100 days in office. 6:30 p.m. ET $20-$25

Wednesday, April 21

Drawing on the Right Side of Your Brain: Popular theory on right side brain activity holds that the right brain is primarily responsible for the intuitive understanding of visual and spatial relationships. Designed to improve the way people see and record objects on paper, this class provides a set of visual exercises to help build the ability to draw. 10:30 a.m. ET $235-$265

The 2021 Oscars: A Year of Drama: Walk the virtual red carpet with Washington City Paper film critic Noah Gittell in an evening that focuses on all things Oscar, from Academy Awards history and trivia to discussions of this unusual year's nominations and behind-the-scenes stories. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

Friday, April 23

The Janus Point: A New Theory of Time, Order, and Chaos: The second law of thermodynamics states that the universe trends toward entropy and disorder. Physicist Julian Barbour offers an intriguing new viewpoint that the law has been misapplied and that the growth of order, not chaos, determines how we experience time. 12 p.m. ET $20-$25

Monday, April 26

Making Life’s Decisions (Inspired by Beatles Songs): Living life like an economist, constantly weighing the costs and benefits of choices in order to arrive at the rational decision that makes the best use of resources, is not an easy thing to do. Economist Brian O’Roark moves through the decisions of life—from finding love to planning for retirement—inspired by the songs of the Beatles. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

A pair of cedar waxwings show their interest for each other by passing a small berry back and forth. Smithsonian Associates presents "Wild Love: Public Displays of Affection in Nature" on April 28. (Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren)

Wednesday, April 28

Wild Love: Public Displays of Affection in Nature: When spring has sprung, nature isn’t shy about showing off how wild love blossoms in mating calls, dances and rituals that can be found everywhere during the season. Liana Vitali, a naturalist and educator at Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary, offers a tasteful look into the world of animal and plant romance and the ways the natural world keeps buzzing. 6:45 p.m. ET $20-$25

Friday, April 30

Creative Instagram Content for Artists and Entrepreneurs: Participants can learn to optimize their Instagram profiles and create fun and engaging posts using the Canva platform and Lifelapse (stop motion) apps. 12 p.m. ET $65-$85

To view Smithsonian Associates digital program guide, visit