Highlights Tours

Free docent-led tours of the galleries are offered Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30 p.m.

All Programs by Date

Photo of GW student dance troupe performing at the museum
Dancers perform at the members' October 2011 reception for the museum's "Weaving Abstraction" exhibition. Photo by Kevin Allen.

Educational programs include lectures, films, gallery talks, workshops, and more, and are held at the museum unless otherwise indicated. Keep reading for a full list of our upcoming offerings.


Book Talk: "No Access Washington, D.C."

Monday, March 2, 2020 - 12:00pm

Beth Kanter exposes the unknown and unseen parts of D.C., from secret alleys to hidden caverns to artistic hideaways.

Consultations: Ask a Curator, Ask a Conservator

Thursday, March 5, 2020 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm

Bring in textiles that you own for a consultation with museum experts.

GW Arts Walk

Thursday, March 5, 2020 - 4:00pm to 9:00pm

Celebrate all the exciting creativity on campus at GW's second annual arts walk, followed by an after-party at the Corcoran!

Lecture: The Slaves Who Built D.C.

Monday, March 9, 2020 - 12:00pm

Historian Lina Mann tells the stories of enslaved individuals who built the iconic buildings of Washington, D.C., including the White House, U.S. Capitol, Post Office, Patent Office, and many others.

Gallery Talk: Fakes and Forgeries in Textile Fragments

Thursday, March 12, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, visit "Delight in Discovery: The Global Collections of Lloyd Cotsen" with Jenna Campolieto and see if you can identify which fragments are forgeries or fakes.

Lecture: Hidden History in Foggy Bottom’s Alleys

Monday, March 16, 2020 - 12:00pm

Expert Washington tour guide Carolyn Crouch shares the unique history of the museum's neighborhood, Foggy Bottom, and its many secrets and untold histories.

Book Launch: "For Love or Money: Confronting the State of Museum Salaries"

Wednesday, March 18, 2020 - 5:30pm

Kristina Durocher, co-editor of "For Love or Money," brings a highly critical focus to the causes and effects of pay inequality in the international museum profession, and proposes effective strategies to remedy the problem.

Gallery Talk: Selections from "Delight in Discovery: The Global Collections of Lloyd Cotsen"

Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, Academic Coordinator Marie-Eve Celio will show you highlights from the Cotsen Textile Traces Study Collection of fragments dating from antiquity to the present day.

Film Screening: "RiverBlue"

Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 5:30pm

Paddler and conservationist Mark Angelo documents the extensive impacts of the global fashion industry on waterways. (Paddle Productions, 2017, 95 minutes)

Family Day: Japanese Fashion Cherry Blossom Festival

Saturday, March 21, 2020 - 10:00am to 3:00pm

Celebrate Japanese fashion at this family day featuring colorful clothing, accessories, and dances from Japan.

Lecture: The Exorcist’s Washington

Monday, March 23, 2020 - 12:00pm

Join David Wilt, GW lecturer in film studies, to uncover the real events in 1940s Washington, D.C., that inspired the horror film.

Gallery Talk: Lia Cook’s “Attitude”

Thursday, March 26, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, Curator of Contemporary Art Caroline Kipp will introduce you to the work of American fiber artist Lia Cook through her 1999 piece "Attitude."

The Quilt Phenomenon

Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 10:30am

Rebecca A. T. Stevens, the museum’s retired consulting curator of contemporary textiles, will trace the journey of the quilt from bedcovering to a contemporary art object.

Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon: Women Fiber Artists

Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Learn how to edit Wikipedia and work together to improve and create Wikipedia articles about women fiber artists.

Lecture: History of the State Department

Monday, March 30, 2020 - 12:00pm

Historian Seth Rotramel explores the origin and evolution of the State Department, one of the original U.S. departments.


Consultations: Ask a Curator, Ask a Conservator

Thursday, April 2, 2020 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm

Bring in textiles that you own for a consultation with museum experts.

Curator Tour for Members: "Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists"

Friday, April 3, 2020 - 11:00am

Curator Robyn Kennedy leads a tour of this landmark exhibition at the Renwick Gallery—the first major thematic show to explore the artistic achievements of Native women.

Gallery Talk: "Pis Siyabit," Head Coverings from the Philippines

Thursday, April 9, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, museum docent Linda Yangas will discuss the artistic influences, cultural practices, and impact of geography and history in the creation of this traditional garment from the southwestern Philippines.

Book Talk: “The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution”

Monday, April 13, 2020 - 12:00pm

Author Lindsay Chervinsky shares the story of George Washington’s creation of the Presidential Cabinet.

Gallery Talk: Mali Tent Weaving

Thursday, April 16, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, join museum docents Julie Geschwind and Nancy McCarthy for a discussion about the creation of elaborate tent panels (arkilla jenngo) woven by Fulani weavers for the nomadic Tuareg in Mali.

Film Screening: “Kindred Spirits: Artists Hilda Wilkinson Brown and Lilian Thomas Burwell”

Monday, April 20, 2020 - 12:00pm

Filmmaker Cintia Cabib will screen and discuss her new documentary exploring the lives and work of two accomplished but unsung African American women artists who lived and worked in Washington, D.C.

Gallery Talk: Kay Sekimachi’s "Moon and Mauna Kea"

Thursday, April 23, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, Curator of Contemporary Art Caroline Kipp will introduce you to the work of American fiber artist Kay Sekimachi through her 1998 piece "Moon and Mauna Kea IV."

Discussion: Championing the Empathetic Museum

Wednesday, April 29, 2020 - 5:30pm

Melanie Adams, director of Smithsonian's Anacostia Community Museum, and museum consultant Gretchen Jennings discuss the characteristics of a museum that prioritizes institutional empathy.


Book Talk: "Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and Their Astonishing Odyssey Home”

Monday, May 4, 2020 - 12:00pm

Richard Bell discusses his new book, Stolen, which shares the troubling story of five free young men kidnapped from their home in Philadelphia and their courageous journey back to freedom.

Consultations: Ask a Curator, Ask a Conservator

Thursday, May 7, 2020 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm

Bring in textiles that you own for a consultation with museum experts.

Curator Tour for Members: "Adorned: African Women & the Art of Identity"

Friday, May 8, 2020 - 11:30am

Associate Curator of African Art Kevin Tervala leads a tour of the Baltimore Museum of Art's exhibition, which brings together two dozen works from its collection to demonstrate the critical role of women in shaping social identities across 20th-century Africa.

Gallery Talk: Threads of Silver and Gold

Thursday, May 14, 2020 - 12:30pm

Join docent Pam Kaplan for a magnifying exploration of the process behind gold- and silver-wrapped thread and the textiles they embellish.

Gallery Talk: Collecting Japanese Treasures

Thursday, May 21, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, independent Japanese textile curator Ann Marie Moeller will discuss several fragments (some over a thousand years old) in "Delight in Discovery: The Global Collections of Lloyd Cotsen" that illustrate the long history of textile collecting in Japan.

Gallery Talk: A Pre-Hispanic Poncho from Peru

Thursday, May 28, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, join museum docent Kathryn Stevens for a discussion of a pre-Hispanic poncho discovered in the Ica Valley of Peru and how it might indicate the wealth and status of the wearer among the Inca elite.


Gallery Talk: A Patchwork Coat and the Art of Re-Use

Thursday, June 11, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, Curator of Education Lori Kartchner explores a one-of a kind patchwork coat and the artful reuse of scraps from more than 20 different types of textiles.

Tour for Members: The Cotsen Textile Traces Study Center

Friday, June 12, 2020 - 2:00pm

Join fellow members on a tour of the museum's new Cotsen Textile Traces Study Center with Academic Coordinator Marie-Eve Celio.

Gallery Talk: "Tapa," Barkcloth of the South Pacific

Thursday, June 18, 2020 - 12:30pm

This week, Curator Lee Talbot will discuss the production and cultural significance of Polynesian "tapa," a textile made from the inner bark of the mulberry tree.

Gallery Talk: The Record-Keeping Khipu

Thursday, June 25, 2020 - 12:30pm

Jeff Splitsoser from GW’s anthropology department will examine how these ancient recording devices were made, how they were used, and the role they played within Inka society.

Curator Tour for Members: "Handmade: Creating Textiles in South Asia"

Friday, June 26, 2020 - 12:30pm

Exhibition curator Cristin McKnight Sethi will introduce you to saris, scarves, and other garments made by artists in Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan.