“Watch This!” at the Smithsonian American Art Museum Thursday, March 24

Overshadowed by the controversy at the National Portrait Gallery, “Watch This!” opened last December at the Smithsonian American Art Museum to a relatively quiet reception. Fortunately the nine works on display have an extended viewing, and—considering their innocuous nature—are at little risk of being removed due to the cries of right-wing zealots. It’s more than a video show: It’s a brief but comprehensive introduction to the history of the moving image since 1969, showcasing early television, video art, and animation processed through LEDs. Nearly everything is bite-sized, looping every few minutes, with the exception of the Nam June Paik and Cory Arcangel works, which are long enough to be viewed like paintings. Indeed, Arcangel’s work is appropriately called “Video Painting.”

The exhibition is on view daily 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, 8th and F Streets NW. Free. (202) 633-7970.

Our Readers Say

thanks for the info, as i have just seen the show last month. i hope you are not trying to compare it to Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture. it is true, it is innocuous next to that show, but it is not the same intent. image having to deal with idiot right wing zeolites who run all over washington trying to censor anything breathing. i don't know how the poor fish in the national aquarium haven't been censored by some former idiot attorney general--or lynn cheney for that matter.

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