Be Inspired To Transform The Future.

Delve into the wonders and challenges of the contemporary world with artists and other creative minds engaged in shaping the future through Contemporary Voices. Join a range of experiences, including conversations, performances, demonstrations, and other events. Each unique program is crafted exclusively to investigate various aspects of Freer|Sackler collections and exhibitions. This series is part of the Freer|Sackler Young and Visionary initiative.

Future programs:

We are planning future programs now. Visit us again to see what's in store.

Past events:

Up Close From Afar: Photographic Records of the Middle East.

February 6.

A conversation with Mitra Abbaspour, associate curator of photography at the Museum of Modern Art, and Carol Huh, Freer|Sackler curator of Shadow Sites.

J.J. McCracken: A Contemporary Response to Ancient Iranian Ceramics.

September 30.

A performance and conversation with artist J.J. McCracken and curator Alex Nagel.

In Conversation with Jananne al-Ani.

August 25.

A conversation with contemporary artist Jananne al-Ani and curator Carol Huh.

Woodblock Printmaking, Then and Now.

May 19 and 20.

Demonstrations and conversations with contemporary woodblock printmaker Keiji Shinohara and curator Ann Yonemura.

Reconstructing the Past, Digitally.

April 30, 2011.

A conversation with Lec Maj, technical advisor to the Xiangtangshan Project, and Adam Metallo and Vince Rossi, 3D digitization and imaging coordinators for the Smithsonian.

Creating the Digital Cave.

March 19, 2011.

A conversation with artist Jason Salavon and curator Keith Wilson.

Sun Xun: From Painting to Animation.

October 29, 2010.

A video screening and conversation with artist Sun Xun and curator Carol Huh.

MC Yogi.

September 25, 2010.

A performance and conversation with MC Yogi, Amanda Giacomini, and Robin Livingston.

Attendees said:
"Hello, MC Yogi! I was at your show in DC tonight, 9/25. Amazing! I'm still, hours later, glowing with positive energy."
"MC Yogi brilliantly translates ancient myths into a fun format."
"I think it is great that you had MC Yogi here. It seems so fresh and young."

Vijai Nathan: McGoddess (Big Macs, Karma and the American Dream).

May 16, 2009.

A performance and conversation with writer and comedian Vijai Nathan.

Birth of a nASIAN.

May 17, 2008.

A performance with trip-hop spoken-word duo Kate Rigg and Lyris Hung.

praCh: It’s a Movement.

September 22, 2007.

A performance and conversation with Khmer American rapper Prach Ly.

Attendees said:
"I definitely had an experience that exceeded my expectations because of all the great information and passion it conveyed."

Slanty Eyed Mama.

May 5, 2007.

A performance and conversation with "sensasian" Slanty Eyed Mama.

Attendees said:
"Not your 'typical' Smithsonian experience. Many compliments to the Smithsonian for finding something so edgy and new. This will be talked about for a while."
"Articulate, thoughtful artists—very open/honest. LOTS to think about."
"No other museum is doing such thought-provoking, modern programming."

You Call That Cha-cha-cha?

September 16, 2006.

Demonstrations, conversations, and a workshop and party with Eileen Torres, Carina Losano, DJ Bruno, Kevin Wang, Judy Chang Kaese, Rebecca and Patrick Pagsibigan, Kayasith Rattanavongkoth, and Chef Graham Bartlett.

Attendees said:
"Very interesting to learn about the Latin influence in Asia—did not realize the popularity of Latin dance in this region."
"It opened my eyes to new things."

Capricious Comics.

May 6–14, 2006.

Demonstrations and conversations with anime artist Colleen Doran.

Sculpting with Sound.

February 8, 2006.

A conversation with composer Eli Marshall.

Contemplating Clouds.

February 3, 2006.

A conversation with artist Mei-ling Hom.

Encounters with Chinese Music.

November 6, 2005.

A conversation with musician Mei Han.

Chinese Music at the Crossroads.

November 6, 2005.

A performance, demonstration, and conversation with the Orchid Ensemble.

Woodblock Printmaking.

December 4–5, 2004.

Demonstrations and conversations with contemporary artist Keiji Shinohara.

Bold Blossoms: Experimental Flower Arrangements.

Tuesdays and Fridays, May 5–September 5, 2003.

Demonstrations and conversations led by Smithsonian Horticultural Specialist Cheyenne Kim.

Attendees said:
"Mr. Kim is a born teacher, creative and supportive."
"I have not learned only about flowers, but also about life."

Crawling through Mud.

May 8, June 5 and 10, July 2 and 29, September 4, 2003.

Conversations with ceramic artists Rob Barnard, Winnie Owens-Hart, Catherine White, Warren Frederick, and Margaret Boozer.

Hamza-style Painting Today.

July 2, 2003.

A demonstration and conversation with artist Gyan Prakash Soni and curator Debra Diamond.

Dialogues with Asian American Artists.

May 4, 2003.

A conversation with artists Y. David Chung, Mei-ling Hom, and Tom Nakashima.

Keiji Shinohara: Woodblock Printing Demonstrations.

October 5–6, December 7–8, 2002.

Demonstrations and conversations with contemporary woodblock printmaker Keiji Shinohara.

   Inner-Artist Workshops
   Contemporary Voices

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The Freer|Sackler is currently closed for renovations, updates, and gallery reinstallation. The popular exhibition Turquoise Mountain: Artists Transforming Afghanistan is still on view in the International Gallery. (Enter through the Ripley Center.) Please join us for our weekend-long reopening celebration on October 14 and 15, 2017.