Lose Yourself In A New Museum Exhibit

Museums aren’t the stuffy destinations for school trips anymore. They’re filled with exciting and intriguing artwork. One of the best things about art is while every piece may not speak to you, there is always a little something for everyone. Some exhibitions reexamine the past with new eyes while others look towards the future. Plus, each museum brings its own flair, and so do the experienced curators who organize the art in unique and creative ways.

So impress a special someone with a fresh take on date night or set out to learn a little more about an area you’ve always been interested in with these ten inspiring museum exhibitions opening this year!


1. Giacomo Casanova: The Seduction of Europe

Museum | Legion of Honor
Location | San Francisco
Dates | February 10, 2018–May 28, 2018

Opening right before Valentine’s Day with the romance and tales of the most infamous ladies’ man of Italy, Giacomo Casanova (1725–1798). His journal spanning twelve years depicts not only his own escapades but gives insight into how eighteenth-century society functioned. Those of you who have only seen the Heath Ledger film portrayal will better understand the lengths Casanova went to in pursuit of pleasure.

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2. In Her Words: Women’s Duty And Service In World War I

Museum | The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum
Location | Washington, DC
Dates | February 2, 2018–May 13, 2018

Explore an in-depth look at the lives of four women working in the military over the course of World War I. The mass numbers of women entering the workforce like never before changed women's rights and the labor force. 

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3. Mounira Al Solh: I strongly believe in our right to be frivolous

Museum | Art Institute Chicago
Location | Chicago, IL
Dates | February 8, 2018–April 29th, 2018

Mounira Al Solh has collected personal experiences and stories from the ongoing humanitarian and political crisis in the Middle East and Syria. In the form of drawings and embroideries Al Solh displays the history of Islamic culture that connect and divide families today.

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4. Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination

Museum |  Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met)
Location | New York City, NY
Dates | May 10, 2018–October 8, 2018

Launching at the Met Gala on April 30th, in collaboration with Anna Wintour and this year hosted by Rihanna, Heavenly Bodies aims to give a dialog between fashion and religious artwork. Papal robes and accessories from the Sistine Chapel are at the heart of this exhibition.

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5. Collecting Stories: Native American Art

Museum | Museum of Fine Arts Boston
Location | Boston
Dates | April 14, 2018–March 10, 2019

Centered around objects collected after 1876, the year The Museum of Fine Art Boston opened, Collecting Stories aims to give a well rounded picture about how the Museum’s Native American art collection grew. The exhibition is focused on giving political and historical context to many of the well known pieces in their collection. 

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6. Tania Bruguera: Untitled (Havana, 2000)

Museum | Museum of Modern Art (MoMa)
Location | New York City, NY
Dates | February 3, 2018–March 11, 2018

Artist and activist, Tania Bruguera’s Untitled (Havana, 2000) performed originally in Cuba is a mixture of a live performance almost in total darkness combined with videos of Fidel Castro. It is being displayed along with her other works at the MoMA. Bruguera’s performance at Cabaña Fortress in Cuba was only shown for three hours before being shut down by the Cuban Government. 

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7. Dana Schutz: Eating Atom Bombs

Museum | The Cleveland Museum of Art
Location | Cleveland, OH
Dates | January 20, 2018–April 15, 2018

Presenting a new series of paintings by Dana Schutz, this exhibition, Eating Atom Bombs aims to show the current disruptive political climate since the 2016 election in the US. Schutz describes her pieces as “Many of the paintings depict dystopic scenes of conflict and shame. Subjects conceal and reveal themselves, trying to hold themselves together as well as the picture.”

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8. Ana Prvački : In Residence

Museum | The De Young
Location | San Francisco, CA
Dates | March 1, 2018–August 26, 2018

The De Young is taking a new experimental turn beginning with artist Ana Prvački . While the exhibition is still being developed, it will be a completely original way to experience a museum including “performance, an alternative tour of the facilities, and interventions into the building and collections.” We are so excited to see the results!

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9. David Hockney: 82 Portraits and 1 Still-life

Museum | Los Angeles County Museum Of Art (LACMA)
Location | Los Angeles, CA
Dates | April 15, 2018–July 29, 2018

Get to know the people who were closest to David Hockney through his own eyes. Including many well-known curators and members of the museum world, not always used to being on the other side of the paintbrush. All 82 portraits and the still-life were painted over the course of three days (March 26th-28th) in 2015. 

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10. Design in Revolution: A 1960’s Odyssey

Museum | Philadelphia Museum of Art
Location | Philadelphia, PA
Dates | February 3, 2018–September 9, 2018

Immerse yourself in the psychedelic life of the 1960’s at this exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. On view are their expansive collection of vintage rock n’ roll posters. The exhibition also displays images from the civil rights and anti war movements; the 60s had it all.

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So practice your leaned-back art critic stance and go explore some museums!


Image Credits: 

1. Pietro Longhi (Italian, 1702–1785), 'The Music Lesson (The Bird Cage)', ca. 1740–1745. Oil on canvas, 22 1⁄4 × 17 1⁄4 in. (56.5 × 43.8 cm). Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Gift of Mortimer Leventritt, 1952.83

2. The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum

3. Mounira Al Solh. I strongly believe in our right to be frivolous, 2012–ongoing. Courtesy of the artist and Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Beirut / Hamburg.

4. Left: El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos) (Greek, 1540/41–1614). Cardinal Fernando Niño de Guevara (1541–1609), ca. 1600. Oil on canvas, 67 1/4 x 42 1/2 in. (170.8 x 108 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929 (29.100.5). Right: Cristóbal Balenciaga (Spanish, 1895–1972) for House of Balenciaga (French, founded 1937). Evening coat, autumn/winter 1954–55. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Mrs. Bryon C. Foy, 1957 (C.I.57.29.8). Digital composite scan by Katerina Jebb

5. Wearing blanket, Native American, Navajo (Diné), 1840–60. Wool weft-faced plain weave. Denman Waldo Ross Collection

6. Tania Bruguera. Untitled (Havana, 2000), 2000. Sugar cane bagasse, video (black and white, silent; 4:37 min.), and live performance. Dimensions variable. The Museum of Modern Art, New York.The Modern Women's Fund and Committee on Media and Performance Art Funds. © 2018 Tania Bruguera. 

7. Shame, 2017. Dana Schutz (American, born 1976). Oil on canvas; 84 x 74 inches. © Dana Schutz, courtesy of Petzel Gallery, New York

8. Ana Prvački and SO-IL, L’air pour l’air, Chicago Architecture Biennial, 2017. Photo by Iwan Baan

9. David Hockney, Barry Humphries, 26th, 27th, 28th March 2015 from 82 Portraits and 1 Still-life, 2015, collection of the artist, © David Hockney, photo by Richard Schmidt

10. The Jimi Hendrix Experience Probably designed by Fantasy Unlimited, Philadelphia Museum Of Art


About The Author

Sarah Spoljaric is a California girl through and through. She has a BA in World History from one of the top 10 greenest campuses in the world; The University of California, Merced and is a Content Curator for the visual travel app Trepic. She has a background in museum curating, loves reading women’s travel journals and is in search of the perfect IPA. She’s passionate about exploring this beautiful world that ethically-produced goods help to protect. Say hi on Instagram!