Approach to the Glenstone pavilions (Photo: Iwan Baan/Glenstone Museum)
Please Note: The tour departs by motorcoach from downtown Washington, DC with a designated secondary pick-up outside the city. Content delivered by the study leader on the way to the destination, after the secondary pick-up, is an integral part of the study tour experience. Meeting the group once the tour is en route is discouraged.
Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required for participation on all tours; additionally, current CDC and Smithsonian COVID-19 guidelines (at the time of the tour) will be followed, including but not limited to masks on the bus and indoors.
Washington’s grand public museums aren’t the only places to see outstanding art: There are treasures to be found in any number of smaller-scaled private collections in the region. Discover some of the finest in this new smaller-group experience led by art historian Ursula Wolfman that includes visits to two distinctive museums that reflect the tastes and visions of their founders—Glenstone in suburban Potomac, Maryland, and D.C.’s venerable Phillips Collection.
At Glenstone, Mitchell and Emily Rales assembled a collection of works by artists who have come to international prominence since World War II, housed in both the museum’s original Charles Gwathmey-designed exhibition space and a newer 204,000-square-foot gallery called the Pavilions. Gardens on the 230-acre estate include an extensive sculpture park featuring pieces by Richard Serra and Ellsworth Kelly, among others. With public visits offered just four days a week, tickets to Glenstone have been highly prized since its doors opened in 2006.
Glenstone’s art is shown in exhibitions that spotlight individual artists. Two works in the collection by the African American artists Lorna Simpson and Arthur Jafa are particularly noteworthy for their contemporary relevance, as they redirect our understanding of issues of representation, identity, and history related to the African American experience.
After lunch at Glenstone, head to Dupont Circle to view another museum founded by an art-collecting couple. Enjoy a guided tour of the special exhibition Picasso: Painting in the Blue Period, co-organized by the Philips Collection and the Art Gallery of Ontario. Comprised of artworks from 30 international collections, the exhibit is the culmination of more than 12 years of scientific and curatorial research on Pablo Picasso’s Blue Period artworks.
The exhibition features more than 90 paintings, sculptures, and works on paper by Picasso, along with works by French and Spanish artists that he studied before and during his Blue Period. Afterward, spend free time in the galleries that include 4,000 works ranging from masterpieces of French impressionism and American modernism to contemporary art.
Additional Date Option for this In-person Tour: Friday, June 10, 2022
World Art History Certificate elective: Earn 1/2 credit*
- Registration for this tour will end by 2 p.m. ET on Thursday, May 26, 2022.
- The tour meets at and leaves by bus from the Mayflower Hotel, Connecticut Ave. and DeSales St., NW. No fringe pick-up.
- This study tour is limited to 25 registrants to allow for an intimate and rewarding group experience. Participants enjoy more space on the bus and extended personal time with the tour leader.
- Vouchers for lunch on your own at Glenstone’s café, which offers a locally sourced seasonal menu, are provided. Wind down a memorable day with light refreshments and a casual group discussion with fellow art lovers.
- The Glenstone tour involves extensive walking through wooded areas covering varying terrains; comfortable walking shoes are recommended.
- For additional tour information:
*Enrolled participants in the World Art History Certificate Program receive 1/2 elective credit. Not yet enrolled? Learn about the program, its benefits, and how to register here.