Media only: Elizabeth Bridgforth 202.633.0521
Public only: 202.633.1000

May 02, 2010

The Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery will honor Washington’s famous blossoms with exciting events celebrating the arts of Japan. During the National Cherry Blossom Festival, March 27 – April 11, the galleries will offer programs ranging from a traditional Japanese tea ceremony to a cutting-edge festival of anime films. Additional highlights of the day include a curator-led tour of the exhibition, “Cornucopia: Ceramics from Southern Japan,” and a text-message scavenger hunt that leads players on a fun search for highlights of the collection featured in the galleries’ new guidebook, Ideals of Beauty: Asian and American Art in the Freer and Sackler Galleries. The complete schedule of programs is below:

Eighth Annual National Cherry Blossom Festival Anime Marathon
Saturday, April 3, at 11 a.m. in the Meyer Auditorium
The galleries will present a daylong festival of Japanese anime, including film screenings, a costume contest and other events. All events are located in the Meyer Auditorium. Please check for updates, film titles and show times.

Tour of “Cornucopia: Ceramics from Southern Japan”
Saturday, April 3, at 1 p.m. in the Freer Gallery
Louise Cort, curator of ceramics, will lead a tour of the current exhibition “Cornucopia: Ceramics from Southern Japan,” on view through Jan. 9, 2011. Learn about Japanese ceramics around the year 1600, when a heightened fascination with their design and uses merged with advances in technology to launch an era of extraordinarily diverse and accomplished ceramic production in Japan.

ImaginAsia Family Programs
ImaginAsia programs invite children ages 8 to 14 and their adult companions to explore an exhibition and create a related art project to take home. All workshops take place in the Sackler classroom unless otherwise indicated. In honor of the festival, ImaginAsia will present:

Tatebanko: Japanese Paper Dioramas
Saturday, March 27 and April 10, at 2 p.m., and Sunday, March 28 and April 11, at 2 p.m.
Participants can create a diorama of a scene from the Edo period in Japan (17th century) using copies of Japanese wood-block prints in the Freer and Sackler collections.

Kimono Fashion Show
Friday–Sunday, April 2–4, at 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the Freer Gallery of Art
Throughout the weekend, models will feature traditional and contemporary Japanese kimono styles at this unique trunk show. Kyoto Kimono, Kimono Rescue, and other designers will offer their finest kimono, handbags and jewelry.

Tea Ceremony 
Saturday, April 3, at 1 and 3 p.m. on Sackler Sublevel 2
Enjoy a Japanese tea ceremony presented by The Chado Urasenke Tankokai DC Association. The tea demonstration will be presented in the Urasenke tradition of Chado. Visitors will have an opportunity to learn the intricacies of Chado (“Way of Tea”), a synthesis of arts and philosophies that combine into a systemized method of preparing, serving and drinking tea.

Ideals of Beauty Scavenger Hunt
Saturday, April 3 (Sign in is between 1 and 3 p.m. at the Freer Gallery.)
Join us for a text-messaging scavenger hunt. Participants can grab their phone, follow the clues and encounter some gems in the Freer collection, highlighted in the museums’ recently published guidebook, Ideals of Beauty: Asian and American Art in the Freer and Sackler Galleries. “Cherry Blossom”-inspired cupcakes will be available for purchase throughout the afternoon.

Freer Gallery “Arts of Japan” Tours
Saturday, March 27 and April 10, at 1 p.m., and Sundays, March 28 and April 11 at 1 p.m.
Explore the world of Japanese art and its close connection to cultural beliefs by examining lavishly painted screens and scrolls, Buddhist temple sculptures and beautifully crafted tea ceramics. Tours meet at the Freer information desk.

Please check for updates on times and programs.

The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, located at 1050 Independence Avenue S.W., and the adjacent Freer Gallery of Art, located at 12th Street and Independence Avenue S.W., are on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. every day, except Dec. 25, and admission is free. The galleries are located near the Smithsonian Metrorail station on the Blue and Orange lines. For more information about the Freer and Sackler galleries and their exhibitions, programs and other events, the public is welcome to visit For general Smithsonian information, the public may call (202) 633-1000 or TTY (202) 633-5285.

the freer and sackler galleries

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