A Gala for the Girls: Celebrating Women in the Arts

Metro Business Media Inc -- National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C.

This season brings with it many beautiful scenes, one of which is the annual Spring Gala held at the National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C.  Each year the celebration is centered around a unique exhibit.  This spring the focus was on Dutch artist, Anna Ancher, and her contemporaries, known as the Skagen Art Colony.

The museum opened its doors to guests at 6:30pm on Friday, April 26th, inviting them in for cocktails and conversation.  The small yet stunning space houses various works from many female artists, both popular and lesser known.  Patrons had the opportunity to admire the art as they mingled, as well as place bids on items displayed for silent auction.

 The purpose of the gala, as explained by committee member Juliana E. May, is “to generate funds for educational programs at the museum, not so much for the exhibits.”  Indeed, it is considered to be the museum’s largest and most important fundraising event.  Judging by the mass of attendees, the gala seemed to have been quite the success.

During this 26th celebration, the Ambassador of Denmark, Mr. Peter Taksøe-Jensen, paid a special visit to honor and support the featured artist’s exhibit, and the museum as a whole.  In a letter to the museum featured in the night’s welcome booklet, he states, “The National Museum of Women in the Arts is a unique institution in many ways.  The museum is the only one in the world dedicated exclusively to female artists. Its strong efforts in raising awareness and recognition of the works of art created by women are absolutely remarkable.”

For 20 years, founders Wilhelmina Cole Holladay and Wallace F. Holladay collected works to eventually be displayed in the private, non-profit museum.  They worked tirelessly over the years to secure a space in which they could exhibit.  Finally, the National Museum of Women in the Arts officially opened its doors to the public in 1987.  The building, located at 1250 New York Ave NW Washington, D.C., was previously a Masonic temple.  It has since been completely refurbished and has received several architectural awards.

Kathleen Springhorn, another member of the Gala Committee, shared some exceptional information about the museum.  “This is one of two museums that operates in the black,” she explained, adding that rentals for private parties help to cover the operational expenses.  Board of Trustees member, Andrea Roane, raved about the marvelous events put on in the space.

With May just around the corner, there are plenty of other exciting events to be held, such as free entry days, a jewelry trunk show, and a concert.  For more information on upcoming activities and ways to help support the National Museum of Women in the Arts, you are encouraged to visit their website.

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