National Portrait Gallery

This damaged floor marker, labeled “Stairwell C, Floor 102,” was recovered from the debris of the World Trade Center and is now housed in the National Museum of American History's National September 11 Collection.

September 11

Commemorate 9/11 With Free Virtual Programs, Resources From the Smithsonian

Here's how the American History Museum, the National Postal Museum and more are reflecting on the tragedy

Josephine Baker's remains will be reinterred at Paris' Panthéon on November 30.

Performer Josephine Baker to Be First Black Woman Buried at Paris' Panthéon

The talented entertainer, activist and spy will be the fifth woman accorded one of France's highest honors

Chuck Close Self-Portrait, dye diffusion transfer prints, 1989

Chuck Close, Artist Whose Photorealist Portraits Captivated America, Dies at 81

The painter, who faced accusations of sexual harassment later in life, continuously changed his artistic style

Shaped mostly like a diamond, Washington, D.C. is organized by geographical divides centered on the U.S. Capitol and the White House, using mathematical principles employed by the original designer, Pierre Charles L’Enfant.

Track the Hidden Histories Lurking in the Street Names of Washington, D.C.

A new exhibition highlights the people behind some of the capital city’s roadways, plazas and parks

Robert McCurdy, Untitled, Jeffrey P. Bezos, 2019, oil on canvas

Jeff Bezos Gifts Historic $200 Million to the Smithsonian

The Amazon founder's gift—the largest since the Institution was created in 1846—will support the Air and Space Museum renovation and a new education center

The Smithsonian's 1980 portrait of Yuri Kochiyama by Corky Lee (above, detail) is the "perfect combination of subject and artist," says the National Portrait Gallery's Ann Shumard.

Women Who Shaped History

Behind This Photo Is the Story of Two Asian American Folk Heroes

Corky Lee's photograph of Yuri Kochiyama captures the familiar struggle of those living at the margins of society

The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery holds an Italian poster (above: Il Quarto Potere, detail) promoting the film.

The Lasting Riddles of Orson Welles' Revolutionary Film 'Citizen Kane'

This year’s award-winning "Mank" attracts new attention to the 80-year-old American classic; two Smithsonian curators share insights

President Donald J. Trump by Pari Dukovic for Time magazine, 2019

Photograph of Former President Donald J. Trump Is Newly Acquired by the National Portrait Gallery

When the museum reopens May 14, the portrait of the 45th president will be on view in the “America’s Presidents” exhibition

Beginning next month, visitors will be able to meet baby panda cub Xiao Qi Ji in person.When the Zoo opens on May 21, visitors will be able to meet baby panda cub Xiao Qi Ji in person. But fair warning—he might be napping.

Smithsonian Announces the Zoo and Seven Museums Open in May

You'll finally be able to see the baby panda in person; here's our comprehensive list of what's on view and tips for visiting

Geraldine Ferraro and Walter Mondale by Diane Walker, 1984

Walter Mondale Never Won the Presidency, but He Changed American Politics Forever

A trove of Smithsonian artifacts document the man who was first to put a woman on the presidential ticket and reshaped the vice presidency

The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery boasts the only public collection of images depicting every single U.S. president throughout history.

The Thorny Politics of Presidential Portraiture

In a new podcast, the National Portrait Gallery reveals that a portrait is being commissioned of the former president

A 1928 photograph of Ernest Hemingway, held in the collections of the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery, was taken in Paris by the artist Man Ray after the legendary writer suffered a life-threatening head injury.

In Search of the Authentic Ernest Hemingway

An upcoming PBS documentary prompts a deep-dive into the story behind this rarely published Smithsonian portrait of the legendary writer

Alice Neel, Jackie Curtis and Ritta Redd, 1970

How Alice Neel's Revolutionary Portraits Put People First

A new show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art features 100 of the American artist's paintings, drawings and watercolors

This 1936 photograph from the collections of the National Portrait Gallery—featuring eight of the nine Scottsboro Boys with NAACP representatives Juanita Jackson Mitchell, Laura Kellum, and Dr. Ernest W. Taggart—was taken inside the prison where the Scottsboro Boys were being held.

Who Were the Scottsboro Nine?

The young black men served a combined total of 130 years for a crime they never committed

Ruth Bader Ginsburg would have celebrated her 88th birthday on March 15, 2021.

A New Sculpture in Brooklyn Honors Ruth Bader Ginsburg

The statue, unveiled to coincide with Women's History Month, is dedicated to the late Supreme Court justice

Could humans be visiting Venus in the future?

Ask Smithsonian

Will We Ever Send Humans to Venus?

You’ve got questions. We’ve got experts

A copy of Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique was gifted to the National Museum of American History and exhibited in a 2015 exhibition "The Early Sixties: American Culture."

The Powerful, Complicated Legacy of Betty Friedan's 'The Feminine Mystique'

The acclaimed reformer stoked the white, middle-class feminist movement and brought critical understanding to a “problem that had no name”

George Peter Alexander Healy, Abraham Lincoln, 1887. Oil on canvas. Dimensions: 188 × 137cm (74 × 53 15/16"). National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; transfer from the National Gallery of Art; gift of the A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust, 1942. This portrait is on view at the National Portrait Gallery, South Gallery 240.

Smithsonian Voices

A Scholar Takes a Deep Dive Into a Painted Homage to Abraham Lincoln

U.S. artist George Peter Alexander Healy’s presidential portraiture, conceived years after the sitter passed away

Hank Aaron (center) poses with his teammates in this 1956 photograph by Osvaldo Salas.

Smithsonian Scholars Reflect on Baseball Legend Hank Aaron's Legacy

The former home run king died in his sleep on Friday at age 86

Every mark in Robert McCurdy’s portraits, above: Untitled (The 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso), is meticulously rendered from the baby hairs that frame his subjects’ temples to the crow’s feet that border their eyes.

Why Robert McCurdy's Photo-Realist Portraits Stop Viewers in Their Tracks

The key to these singular portraits of influential leaders of our time rests in the gaze and the exacting details of the clothing