City Paper is not for tourists
“TruthBeauty” promises to be nothing if not thorough, though the century-long time span seems a stretch—the photographic movement known as pictorialism is generally thought to have lasted from, at most, the 1880s to the 1910s. The exhibit, making its final stop on an international tour, features more than 130 images, including work by Alfred Stieglitz, Gertrude Käsebier, and Alvin Langdon Coburn. Devotees of more muscular genres of photography may regard pictorialism, with its soft-focus approach and painterly ideals, as (let’s admit it) a bit feminine. But gender-stereotyping aside, the movement had multiple charms, including its lush, dreamy tones and its practitioners’ willingness to experiment with new techniques for printing and developing. An accompanying exhibit features three landmark portfolios by Coburn.
THE EXHIBITION IS ON VIEW 10 A.M. to 5 P.M. TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, FRIDAY, SATURDAY, 10 A.M TO 8:30 P.M. THURSDAYS, AND 11 A.M. TO 6 P.M. SUNDAY, FROM OCT. 9 TO JAN. 9 AT THE PHILLIPS COLLECTION, 1600 21ST ST. NW. FREE. (202) 387-2151.