Events August 1-5: Seasons Arts of Japan, Doll Pins, Gherman Titov, Ancient Central America, Dinner and a Movie

This week visit the Smithsonian for ExplorAsia, a craft session at Anacostia, a chance to learn about Russian cosmonaut Gherman Titov and more

Expert Lecture
The Air and Space Museum’s Ask and Expert Lecture series is at it again this Wednesday with a look into the life of Russian cosmonaut Gherman Titov Courtesy of Eric Long, Air and Space Museum

Monday August 1 Artistic Monday

Don’t let the Monday blues creep in today. Join the Freer and the Sackler Galleries for ExplorAsia instead. Come to galleries 6 and 7 of the Freer at 1:30 to delve into the arts of Japan in Seasons: Arts of Japan. Explore paintings of cranes and owls. Marvel at the beauty of cherry blossoms or the paintings of the Japanese samurai as you discover the sights, sounds and activities of the seasons in Japan. Listen to beautiful poetry or create your own whimsical verse. Children are invited to act out what they see in the paintings and are encouraged to explore how a Japanese screen is made and used. This two-hour event is free and family-friendly so come for an hour or two.

Tuesday August 2 Make a Doll

Head down to the Anacostia Community Museum for a fun activity. Come to the program room of the museum at 10:30 where artist Camilla Younger is facilitating a workshop that invites visitors to create doll pins from a variety of crafts materials. After the dolls are complete, explore the exhibitions Anacostia has to offer. This event is free and visitors are invited to swing by the program room anytime between 10:30 and 12. For reservations call 202-633-4844.

Wednesday August 3 Russian Cosmonauts

This Wednesday at noon head to the Air and Space Museum for a special event. Meet at the museum seal in Milestones of Flight, Gallery 100 on the 1st floor of the museum take part in Ask an Expert Lecture Series. This Wednesday, join presenter Cathleen Lewis from the museum’s Space History Division as she explains the history, collections and the personality of Gherman Titov. Born in Verkhneye Zhilino, Titov was chosen as Russia’s second cosmonaut. He flew the Vostok 2 mission that launched in August of 1961, completing his mission in less than 26 hours after orbiting the earth 17 times. The 25-year-old cosmonaut was the youngest person to ever fly in space. After learning about Gherman Titov, explore the rest of Fifty Years of Human Flight.

Thursday August 4 Explore Ancient Central America

During the late 19th-century, travelers, scientists, politicians and archaeologists returned from Central America with never-before-seen artifacts. Numerous pieces ended up in museums or private collections, but regardless of their final resting places, the collections have helped define a unique history of Central America. This Thursday, join the Smithsonian Latino Center for the symposium, “Collecting Ancient Central America: Museums, Explorers, and Archaeologists in the Pursuit of the Past.” Come to the Rasmuson Theater on the first level of the American Indian Museum at 7 to take part. Keynote speaker Dr. John Hoopes of the University of Kansas will explain how individuals and institutions, as well as social and political factors have impacted the collecting of objects from Belize, Guatemala and Panama. This event is free, ending at 8:30.

Friday August 5 Dinner and a Movie

Friday is date night, so come to the American Indian Museum for dinner and a movie. Grab some dinner at the Zagat-rated Mitsitam Cafe  between 5 and 6:30 then head into the Rasmuson Theater at 7 for the world premiere of “Always Becoming,”  a new film by Santa Clara Pueblo artist Nora Naranjo-Morse. The film explores issues of Native identity, place and memory through the creation of modern sculpture. After the screening stick around for a question and answer session with director Nora Naranjo-Morse. Dinner is à la carte from the cafe, but the screening is a free event, seats are limited so be sure to register.

For a complete listing of Smithsonian Institution events and exhibitions visit the goSmithsonian Visitors Guide.

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