Cover Photo: 5 Stages of a Palm, Christine Neill, 2012

High Drama: The Contemporary American Theater Festival

June 3 – August 6, 2017


Groh Gallery

I want to see what television and film and a book and poetry can’t deliver.  Immediacy.  Fervor.  Wreckage.
Sheila Callaghan, Playwright of Everything You Touch

Gallery Talk with Peggy McKowen, Associate Producing Director, CATF

Wednesday, July 12, 2017/10:00 a.m./Free/Groh Gallery/Washington County Museum of Fine Arts

Gallery Talk with Peggy McKowen, Associate Producing Director, CATF

Wednesday, July 19, 2017/10:00 a.m./Free/Groh Gallery/Washington County Museum of Fine Arts

Reserve your spot for the Gallery Talks by calling 301-739-5727 or email

Creating Upcycled Fashion Workshop with Peggy McKowen

Sunday, July 30 2017/1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m./ Click for more information and to register

The Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) is a professional theater dedicated to producing and developing new American plays.  One of the top three premier new play Festivals in the country, CATF is committed to telling diverse stories that discuss relevant themes of today’s society.  CATF has been telling stories for 26 years – stories that are immediate, fervent and often provocative and challenging.  The scenery, costumes and other visual dialogue of these plays tell the same stories with passion, creativity and boldness. In this exhibition, visitors will experience the visual dialogue of these stories through the costumes and designs of CATF artists, including Peggy McKowen, Costume Designer and Associate Producing Director.  Costume designs range from the savagely beautiful “runway clothes” of Everything You Touch, to full the size cactus and sunflower costumes from the searing play Mr. Marmalade.  The installation will be enlivened with drawings, notes, fabric swatches, scale models, props, video and stunning shoes. Together, these objects deliver a close, personal look at the art on stage at the Contemporary American Theater Festival.


The Museum of Fine Arts–Washington County is honored to forge this
innovative partnership with CATF for the presentation of this exhibition.
We are grateful to our sponsors for making the exhibition possible.


Natural Selections: The Paintings of Christine Neill

April 15 – July 9, 2017

“Cloud of Witnesses,” 2015

Contents: Watercolors and Mixed Media prints
Organized by the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts in collaboration with the artist

Nature has provided the primary imagery for Christine Neill’s work for the past two decades.  Neill uses the immediacy of aqueous paint mediums and her own photographs to interpret natural shapes and unseen internal structures.  These multi-layered works celebrate the intricacies of thriving ecosystems and examine threatened species. Neill’s works are reminders that all individuals have a deep-rooted connection to the earth and that similar biological processes bind the natural and human worlds.

Sponsored by The Waltersdorf Family Fund at the Community Foundation of Washington County

  Painting Nature with Christine Neill Workshop

   Saturday, April 22, 2017/10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

This workshop focuses on the painting of nature objects. Bringing the natural forms into the indoor studio allows us to closely examine aspects of light & color, composition, form & surface and pictorial space.

Click for more information


Breath of Spring

April 19, 2017 – June 25, 2017

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“Apple Blossoms,” Arthur Parton, Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Albert R. Miller, Jr.







Selected Pictures from our Collections

Ashcan to Abstraction: Modernism in America

KersteingalleryphotolightenKerstein Gallery
(click for more photos)


This long-term exhibition, from the Museum’s permanent collection, explores the development of 20th century American art.  Artists such as John Sloan, Robert Henri, George Luks, William Glackens, Hugo Ballin, Philip Guston, Robert Goodnough, Gene Davis, and Grace Hartigan capture the full range of artistic movements experienced during this transformative century.


Sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Robert M. Kerstein, The Nora Roberts Foundation,  The Henry Luce Foundation, and the Washington County Gaming Commission.


European Old Masters (ongoing)

Mazone, Giovanni, Saints Mary Magdalene and Paul

Schreiber Gallery
(click for more photos)


Old master paintings form an important part of the Museum’s collection and are showcased in the Schreiber Gallery. Works of art by artists such as Giovanni Mazone, Timoteo Viti, and Pierre Mignard are included.









Nineteenth Century American Art (ongoing)

Church croppedSmith Gallery
(click for more photos)


Curated by Dr. Elizabeth Johns, Professor Emerita, History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania, this exhibition presents the Museum’s outstanding collection of nineteenth century American art. Artists in the installation include Thomas Cole, Frederic Church, Albert Bierstadt, Thomas Moran, Robert Spear Dunning, and John Gutzon Borglum. Exhibition sponsored in part by Art & Ruth Anne Callaham and Spence & Cinda Perry.



Singer Memorial Gallery (ongoing)

January 2014 921

Singer Gallery
(click for more photos)


The Singer Memorial Gallery was established in 1949 by the Museum’s founder, Hagerstown native Anna Brugh Singer (1873-1962), as a tribute to her husband, artist William Henry Singer, Jr. (1868 – 1943). The diverse art collection they amassed, and of which over a hundred works were donated to the Museum, conveys the story of their lives as American expatriates in Norway and art collectors, while presenting compelling and significant works reflecting American, Dutch, and French trends of the late nineteenth-century.

Opened in 2013, the current installation was organized by guest curator, Hollis McCullough, to display the tastes of the Singers and highlight the significant works of art they contributed to the Museum. Artists in the installation include Willard Metcalf, Childe Hassam, Adolphe Joseph Monticelli, Gustave Courbet, and Pierre-Auguste Rodin.


American Decorative Arts (ongoing)


Decorative Arts Gallery

Objects tell stories and hold within them the history of the time and place in which they were created. This exhibition examines the stories and histories of objects from the Museum’s diverse collection of American decorative arts, including ceramics, glass, silver, and textiles.




Art Glass (ongoing)

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 Rinehart Gallery

The Museum’s Rinehart Gallery houses some of the most notable art glass pieces in the Museum’s decorative arts collection. The specially lit cases in this gallery showcase the work of such makers as Lalique, Loetz, and Steuben.

To learn more about our current exhibitions, contact the Museum online, by calling (301) 739-5727, or via email at



To learn more about our future exhibitions, contact the Museum online, by calling (301) 739-5727, or via email at






Eudora Welty: Southern Narratives

Welty, Side Show

Dates: July 15 – October 22, 2017

Bowman Gallery

One of America’s best known writers, Eudora Welty (1909 – 2001) captured the people and spirit of the American South, in both words and images. While employed as a publicity agent for the Works Progress Administration (WPA), Welty took photographs in her free time. Direct and often poignant, these photos—which often served as the inspiration for her short stories—illustrate the life of the rural poor in the South and the effects of the Great Depression. This exhibition of photographs on loan from the Knoxville Museum of Art offers a rare opportunity to share Eudora Welty’s perspective as social witness, and to celebrate her talent as the creator of visual narratives as powerful as those she crafted with words. Eudora Welty: Southern Narratives is organized by the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts in partnership with the Knoxville Museum of Art


The Art of Life: Celebrating 85 Years of Art Education

Dates: August 8 – October 8, 2017

Groh Gallery

The final installment of the museum’s 85th anniversary year, this exhibition celebrates the significant role that art education has played at the museum—one of the original mandates established by Anna Brugh Singer and William H. Singer Jr., in their founding documents for the museum. Museum art instructors and their students will be invited to submit artworks in all media for inclusion in this juried exhibition.


HENSE: Paintings and Wall Collage by Alex Brewer

Dates: October 21, 2017 – January 14, 2018

Groh Gallery

Alex Brewer, the contemporary artist also known as HENSE, is best known for dynamic and colorful abstract paintings and monumental wall pieces. Active since the 1990s, Brewer began accepting commissions for artwork in 2002. Over the last decade, he has established a solid reputation as a commissioned artist, having exhibited in several solo and group shows. Brewer has produced a number of interior and exterior works for public institutions and private companies around the world, including the ISIL Institute in Lima, Peru, Apple Inc., and Facebook Global Headquarters, in Menlo Park, California. In the summer of 2017, Brewer, as HENSE, will complete a commissioned building mural along Hagerstown’s Cultural Arts Trail. The Washington County Museum of Fine Arts is pleased to celebrate the culmination of this mural project with this site-specific installation of Brewer’s recent works.

Painted Pages: Illuminated Manuscripts, 13th – 18th Centuries

Dates: November 4, 2017 – January 28, 2018
Bowman Gallery
Contents: More than 30 framed folios from European, Persian, Armenian, and Hebrew manuscripts, plus a display of materials used to create them

Painted Pages: Illuminated Manuscripts explores the golden age of handmade books, some of which employed elaborate gold leaf decoration and intricate ornament. The exhibition includes examples from medieval European Bibles, prayer books, psalters, books of hours, choir books, missals, breviaries, and lectionaries. Most of the works date from the thirteenth through the eighteenth centuries and are ink on parchment (prepared animal skin). French, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Flemish, English, Armenian, and German examples will be included in addition to non-Western pages, including 17th- and 18th-century leaves from Hebrew texts, the Koran and the Shahnameh, the Persian illustrated Book of Kings.  A display of artist’s materials—gold leaf, parchment, vellum, and mineral pigments—is also featured in the exhibit.  Painted Pages: Illuminated Manuscripts, 13th-18th Centuries is organized by the Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania.

Cumberland Valley Artists and Photographers Exhibition

Dates: February 3 – April 8, 2018
Groh and Bowman Galleries

Contents: Artworks in all media, selected through a juried process
Organized by the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts

Washington County Public Schools Art Exhibition

Dates: April 21 – May 6, 2017 (Primary Schools)
Dates: May 12 – May 27, 2017 (Middle and High Schools)

BAM! It’s a Picture Book: The Art behind Graphic Novels

Dates: June 10 – September 23, 2018

Groh Gallery

Contents:  Eighty-one original graphic works by some of the leading artists working in the arena of contemporary graphic novels.  

Graphic novels have gained immense popularity in recent years.  More varied in content than their early counterparts, they have also reached a new level of artistic respectability.  Graphic novels have been the subject of scholarly studies, topics of museum exhibitions, and even the recipient of the Pulitzer Prize.  According to the American Library Association, they are among the fastest growing categories in publishing and bookselling.

            The cave paintings of ages past and hieroglyphics of ancient Egypt were the first examples of storytelling through pictures.  The dawn of the Industrial Age saw the beginning of the graphic novel as a format of entertainment.  The first major graphic novel, The Adventures of Obadiah Oldbuck, was published in the U.S. in 1842; the collected edition of The Yellow Kid cartoons in book form (1897) is recognized as the first financially successful graphic novel.  The last century saw the emergence of the popular DC Comic heroes SupermanBatman, and Marvel Comic’s Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, and X-Man.
BAM! It’s a Picture Book: The Art behind Graphic Novels
 features works by Mark Crilley, Matthew Holm, Jarrett J. Krosoczka, Lincoln Pierce and Raina Telgemeier.  On display is artwork from iconic books such as Baby MouseBig NateLunch LadyBrody’s Ghost and Smile.  The exhibition is organized by at the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature in Abilene, Texas.







Washington County Museum of Fine Arts

Established in 1931 and dedicated to collecting, preserving and interpreting works of art for the people of Washington County and citizens from the four-state region, the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts has been recognized as one of the finest small museums in the United States. Located in Hagerstown’s beautiful City Park, and accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, its collection includes over 6,500 works of art. The Washington County Museum of Fine Arts has an enduring commitment to arts education and to the support of regional artists. The Museum actively collects works of art in the fields of American Art, world cultures, and art of the region. The museum regularly offers studio art courses, art historical lectures, concerts, and exhibitions from its permanent collection and traveling shows.

The Washington County Museum of Fine Arts is funded through support from museum membership and annual fund donations by the public, grants from the business and corporate communities, and support from Washington County, the City of Hagerstown, private foundations, and the Maryland State Arts Council. For more information about the Museum, please phone (301) 739-5727 or visit

Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and Sunday from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Admission to the Museum and adjacent parking is free.