Visiting the Museum
current exhibitions
upcoming exhibitions
past exhibitions
web-only exhibitions
Portrait Search
Events & Programs
Rights & Reproductions
Membership & Giving
Host an Event
Museum Shop

  View our related websites:

Portrait Competition civil war george washington lunder conservation center
Return to previous pagePast Exhibition:

Portraiture Now: Communities
November 6, 2009 through July 5, 2010
First Floor

Visit the website

Listen to "Voice of Maquoketa"


How do we define community today? Through new electronic networking, our connections with family, friends and acquaintances are increasingly widespread. And yet, we are still drawn to the idea of small communities and face-to-face interaction. Each of the three painters selected for “Portraiture Now: Communities” has explored this idea through a series of related portraits of friends, townspeople, or families. Rose Frantzen has portrayed 180 people from her hometown, Maquoketa, Iowa. The oil paintings are 12" x 12" and were created over a twelve-month period. Jim Torok creates meticulous small scale oil on panel portraits. On view will be his portraits of fellow artists from New York as well as a series of paintings documenting three generations of a single family. Rebecca Westcott, until her untimely death in 2004, created nuanced full-length images of her peers, often Philadelphians in their 20s, which merge expressive figuration with a gritty street art aesthetic. Seen together, the paintings by these three artists suggest the enduring power of personal communities.


Jim Torok / Self-Portrait / 2008 / Oil on panel / Baron & Budd, P.C., Dallas, TX

Chi / Rebecca Westcott / 2002 / Oil and acrylic on paper attached to foamboard / Philip Paratore & Michael Landrum, Houston, TX

Sylvia Engel / Rose Frantzen / 2005-06 / Oil on panel / Collection of the artist, Maquoketa, IA


smithsonian institution | privacy | copyright | sitemap | npg home

Museum  Floorplan
View the museum's new exhibition spaces and layout.

Gallery Floorplan
View Floorplan (PDF)