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Arts and Culture

Cartoon Imagery, Painting Propoganda at American University Museum

By Maggie Barrett

Five new exhibitions at the American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center showcase national and international progressive art. The museum will open the new exhibitions for public viewing starting on Saturday, January 31.

“The current shows at the American University Museum present a contrast of cultures, cutting-edge art by some of the region’s best talent, and kinetic sculpture that uses the wind and sun to move the viewer,” said Jack Rasmussen, museum director and curator. 

Evri Kwong: Just Pretend Everything is OK adopts cartoon imagery and folksy realism to expose social and political outrages in contemporary life. Kwong’s narrative paintings address a variety of national issues, including hypocrisy, consumerism, racism, sexual abuse, religious intolerance, and violence.

Carrie Moyer: Painting Propaganda uses the languages of abstraction and propaganda to advocate for human liberation. Moyer’s exhibition is presented in concert with the 16th annual Lavender Languages and Linguistics Conference sponsored by American University’s Department of Anthropology. The conference will be held as AU Friday, February 13 through Sunday, February 15.

Kugach, Kugach, Kugach: Three Generations of Russian Artists uses beautiful technique and bucolic subject matter to present the viewer with an alternative vision of Russia during the past 70 years.

Washington Project for the Arts will host its auction and gala for the second, consecutive year at the museum. One hundred works from the region’s top artists selected by curators from Washington, D.C.; Baltimore; New York City; and Chicago, will be on display. 

Paul Daniel: Current Reflection will be in the sculpture garden outside the museum. Daniel will harness the movement of air, reflected sunlight, and the earth’s rotation to change the way we experience our environment.

All exhibitions open to the public starting on Saturday, January 31. Washington Project for the Arts closes on Saturday, March 7, with the 28th Annual Art Auction beginning at 6 p.m. Kugach, Kugach, Kugach: Three Generations of Russian Artists and Carrie Moyer: Painting Propaganda close on Sunday, March 15. Evri Kwong: Just Pretend Everything is OK closes on Sunday, March 22. Paul Daniel: Current Reflection closes on Sunday, April 12. A series of free programs, including gallery talks, will be announced separately.   


The American University Museum is a three-story, public museum and sculpture garden located within the university’s Katzen Arts Center. The region’s largest university facility for exhibiting art, the museum has a permanent collection that highlights the donors’ holdings and AU’s Watkins collection. Rotating exhibitions emphasize regional, national and international contemporary art.

The Katzen Arts Center, named for Washington area benefactors Dr. and Mrs. Cyrus Katzen, brings all the visual and performing arts programs at AU into one space. Designed to foster interdisciplinary collaboration in the arts, the Katzen includes the museum, the Abramson Family Recital Hall, the Studio Theatre, a dance studio, an electronics studio, artists’ studios, rehearsal space and classrooms.