Reason 247

#247: Corcoran Gallery of Art

This is one of the few museums in DC that is not free, which means it was packed during the shutdown. They do occasionally have free open house days and in the summer they have a few days when there is free admission. I am not sure how much admission to the Corcoran is, but if it’s less than $15, it’s probably worth it.

Unlike the National Gallery of Art and the Phillips Collection, I don’t think the Corcoran has any works of art that are instantly recognizable to people, though they do host great exhibits like the one on Chuck Close a few years back. I am not an art critic and I don’t pretend to be, so that’s about all that I can say about their collection. The Washington Post interviewed security guards a while back to ask these people what their favorite pieces in the museum were. The guard they interviewed at the Corcoran, Berhanu Taffa, has been on the job for 10 years. He said his favorite painting was “Niagara” by Frederic Edwin Church. That was my favorite painting too.

Niagara by Frederic Edwin Church

Niagara by Frederic Edwin Church

The Post also interviewed Mr. Taffa four years ago for a different piece. At that time, Mr. Taffa had only been at the Corcoran for four years (the years don’t add up, I know. Go ask the Post about this). At the time Mr. Taffa said that his favorite painting was “Ground Swell”, by Edward Hopper. To be fair, he said “one of his favorites” but the story didn’t name any other ones, so I assume this one was his ultimate favorite. It’s a gorgeous painting too.

"Ground swell" by Edward Hopper

“Ground swell” by Edward Hopper

What might be most beautiful about the Corcoran is the building itself. The beautiful Beaux-Arts building is just about four blocks from the White House. After some controversy about how the museum would be able to afford it’s very fancy home, it looks like it will be able to stay there for now. Go visit it before it’s too late. You can walk around and pretend that you live in a giant, super fancy home. It’s fun. I promise.


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