Friends of the Smithsonian Member Events

One of the most exciting benefits that Friends of the Smithsonian members receive is invitations to exclusive digital and in-person member events.

Become a member to start receiving your invitations for these exceptional programs!

Upcoming Events

Sea urchin basket

This Present Moment: Crafting a Better World, part of the Food for Thought Lecture Series

July 23, 2022

This Present Moment: Crafting a Better World showcases American craft like never before, highlighting the role that artists play in our world to spark essential conversations, stories of resilience, and methods of activism—showing us a more relational and empathetic world. It centers more expansive definitions and acknowledgments of often-overlooked histories and contributions of women, people of color, and other marginalized communities.

Activating two floors of gallery space, This Present Moment highlights more than 170 artworks from the museum’s permanent collection in a range of craft mediums from fiber and ceramics to glass and mixed media. Approximately 135 of the featured artworks are new acquisitions, never before seen at the Renwick Gallery. Mary Savig, Lloyd Herman Curator of Craft, will provide insight into how the exhibition took shape and explore key themes and artworks.

Join or renew as a James Smithson Society member to attend this event.

For more information about this event, please call 202-633-2040 or email smithsonsociety@si.edu.

Australian sea star

Can a Drop of Water Save a Species? Ocean DNA, part of the Food for Thought Lecture Series

September 20, 2022

As we brace for the coming consequences of human-mediated impacts to Earth’s oceans, our ability to understand the ocean ecosystems in which life thrives is critical to prioritizing conservation actions. Yet our understanding of these ecosystems is largely incomplete. New advances in genomic science can help us fill in the gaps; environmental DNA (eDNA) methods are transforming the way scientists collect and analyze data. Ocean DNA, a founding research project of the museum’s Ocean Initiative will harness the power of our extensive marine collection, advances in genomic and data science technologies, and our scientific expertise to develop a toolkit that can rapidly assess ocean health.

We will develop this toolkit which can be applied to discover new species, detect invasive species, monitor change, assess the effectiveness of marine reserves and management practices, and inform priorities for conservation.

Chris Meyer, Curator of Mollusks in the Department of Invertebrate Zoology at the National Museum of Natural History will discuss environmental DNA (eDNA), a cutting-edge genomic tool poised to radically enhance global ocean health intelligence, transform our understanding of the ocean ecosystem, and enable better conservation planning.

Join or renew as a James Smithson Society member to attend this event.

For more information about this event, please call 202-633-2040 or email smithsonsociety@si.edu.

Recent Events

Members can also access recordings of more past events! Log in with your members-only username and password »

Movement of Life

Subversive, Skilled, Sublime: Fiber Art by Women