- The Washington Times - Friday, April 7, 2006

New architecture isn’t the only attraction being unveiled at the Phillips Collection next weekend. On display inside the new Sant Building are recently acquired modern photographs and big postwar abstractions previously stored for lack of space. Two new sculptures by Ellsworth Kelly and Barbara Hepworth have a permanent home in the walled courtyard at the rear.

Back on view in the 1897 mansion will be one of the museum’s favorite paintings, “Luncheon of the Boating Party” by French impressionist Pierre-Auguste Renoir. It is one of 60 paintings returning from a four-year international tour that will make up a new exhibit of masterworks at the museum.

The Phillips also has scheduled activities on April 15 and 16 around a Renoir theme. Chalk artists will draw Parisian scenes on the sidewalks, and street performers will portray characters depicted in the “Boating Party.” On Saturday, the film “A Day in the Country” by son Jean Renoir will be screened. A specially commissioned musical piece, “Renoir’s Feast,” will be played by composer and pianist Haskell Small on Sunday evening in the mansion’s music room. Admission to the weekend events is free. For more information, call 202/387-2151.

— Deborah K. Dietsch

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