Director’S Desk

View of the museum from outside showing the Neoclassical building from one corner. The building is a tan-colored stone with an arched doorway, long vertical windows, and detailed molding around the roof.

A Letter From Susan Fisher Sterling

Posted: March 25, 2020
Category: Director’S Desk
Although NMWA is temporarily closed, we stand with our communities—both here and around the world. We are available online with artists, objects, and stories to lift the spirit, inspire the...
The phrase “What if Women Ruled the World” is sculpted with neon tubes of bright yellow, in all capital letters. The letters of “WOMEN” are larger than the rest and are configured vertically.

Director’s Desk: Built to Order

Posted: January 29, 2020
Category: Director’S Desk
The artists in NMWA's “Built to Order” gallery investigate human intervention in the natural world, considering the impact of structures, cities, and societies.
Eery photograph in blue tones of a concrete silo at night.

Director’s Desk: Roots to Routes

Posted: December 4, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
Perhaps because of gendered, racial, and class-based expectations about a woman’s “place” in the world, many women artists examine the subjects of homelands and migration.
Close-up photograph of a painted quilt shows a medium-dark skinned woman dancing exuberantly. There is a white flower in her hair, and she wears dangling gold earrings and gold loops around her neck.

Director’s Desk: The Great Outdoors

Posted: October 9, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
At NMWA, we regularly rotate our collection to spark new thematic connections. Museum director, Susan Fisher Sterling, explores "The Great Outdoors" from our most recent collection installation.

Director’s Desk: Space Explorers

Posted: July 10, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
NMWA director, Susan Fisher Sterling, examines the theme "Space Explorers" from our most recent collection installation. Spaces, both physical and metaphorical, often have strong gendered associations.

Director’s Desk: Family Matters

Posted: May 30, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
When selecting subjects, artists and their patrons often turn to those closest to them: spouses, partners, children, parents, siblings, friends, and pets. Artists from all periods have created tender, naturalistic...
Gallery view with contemporary sculpture made of orange motor scooters that resemble two antlered animals fighting in foreground. Four paintings hang on a magenta wall in background, including a baroque painting of the Virgin and Child, and a portrait of a light-skinned man, women and children gathered together in eighteenth-century attire. To the left on a white wall hang two other paintings.

Director’s Desk: Rebels with a Cause

Posted: April 11, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
Explore the themes featured in NMWA's most recent collection installation with NMWA director Susan Fisher Sterling.
Eight diverse women museum visitors are scattered throughout the NMWA collection galleries browsing the art on the walls.

Director’s Desk: Women Museum Directors Conquer D.C.

Posted: January 31, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
Mark the date: March 11, 2019. It’s the day Kaywin Feldman becomes the fifth director of the National Gallery of Art. No woman has held the post before.

Director’s Desk: Women Artists Address Migration

Posted: January 3, 2019
Category: Director’S Desk
At first glance, it might be difficult to identify common threads in works by Ingrid Mwangi, Jami Porter Lara, and Betsabeé Romero. Each artist uses vastly different materials to address...

Get to Know NMWA’s Director: Part 2

Posted: July 11, 2018
Category: Director’S Desk
NMWA Director Susan Fisher Sterling answers questions about art, equity, and travel. This is part two of a two-part questionnaire.