Smithsonian Craft Show Opens May 1

The Country’s Best Contemporary Craft for Purchase at Juried Event
March 27, 2024
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Turquoise-colored ceramic with painted small orange koi fish and a slice of lime, small gray and white bird on top.

Featuring the work of this country’s leading contemporary artists, the 42nd annual Smithsonian Craft Show, runs May 1–5, at Washington, D.C.’s National Building Museum.

Selected by a panel of expert jurors, 120 artists will show and sell their work representing all facets of craft and design, including basketry, ceramics, decorative fiber, furniture, glass, jewelry, leather, metal, mixed-media, paper, wearable art and wood.

The Smithsonian Women’s Committee produces this annual event to celebrate the finest in American contemporary craft and design. The theme of this year’s event is “Celebrating Joy” in craft and design.

“Our show’s proceeds underwrite grants for Smithsonian projects that support innovative education, enhance knowledge, research and outreach in areas of culture, arts, mysteries of the universe, biodiversity and the American experience,” said Nancy Newkirk, the show’s co-chair.

Admission is $20 at the door, and group sales of 10 or more are $15 each, both of which may be purchased in advance. The show’s May 1 Preview Night Benefit reception offers an early opportunity to view and purchase crafts.

“We are delighted to announce that the honorary chair of the show is Meroë Park, Deputy Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the Smithsonian Institution,” said Denise Thorne, the event’s co-chair.  

Also on display will be pieces from this year’s Smithsonian Visionary Award and Delphi Award winners. At the Preview Night Benefit, the Smithsonian Visionary Award will be presented to glass artist Dan Dailey and stained-glass artist, Judith Schaechter. The Smithsonian Women’s Committee’s Delphi Award, recognizing outstanding mid-career artists, will be awarded to contemporary art glassmaker Norwood Viviano.

Smithsonian Craft Show, May 1–5

National Building Museum at 401 F Street N.W.
Hours: May 2–4, 10:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. and May 5, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.  
Admission is $20, group sales of 10 or more are $15 each; students are $15 each
May 1, 5–6 p.m.: Preview Party with early entry and Visionary Artist Reception; tickets are $500 each
May 1, 6–9 p.m.: Preview Party: A first-look opportunity to shop and buy; tickets are $250 each
Tickets are available for purchase on the Smithsonian Craft Show’s website. 

About the Smithsonian Women’s Committee

The Smithsonian Women’s Committee (SWC) is an all-volunteer organization of 170 members that raises funds through its annual Craft Show and Craft2Wear Show to fund its grants and endowment programs that support the initiatives of the Smithsonian’s 21 museums (two of which are in the early-planning phases), 21 libraries, the National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute and numerous education, research and conservation centers in the Washington, D.C., area and around the world. To date, the SWC has funded more than $14 million in grants and endowments throughout the Institution.

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Heidi Austreng

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