- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Long thought an offshoot of Chinese and other Southeast Asian ceramics, Vietnamese ceramics are now recognized for the unique beauty of their glazes and their robust shapes. The Freer Gallery of Art now shows celadons, exquisitely painted blues-and-whites and simpler wares of a gray-green clay in Vietnamese Ceramics from the Red River Delta. Jefferson Drive at 12th Street Southwest. 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Free. Runs indefinitely. 202/633-4880.

— Joanna Shaw-Eagle

The new year’s first movie retrospective at the National Gallery of Art, scheduled for seven weekends, is devoted to the French critic and filmmaker Jacques Rivette, who turns 79 in March. Along with Claude Chabrol and Eric Rohmer, Mr. Rivette has remained the most durable contributor to theatrical features among early participants in France’s new wave movement of the late 1950s and early 1960s.

The showings begin with two of the most diverting of Mr. Rivette’s typically discursive movies, 1974’s three-hour Celine and Julie Go Boating (tomorrow at noon and Sunday at 4:30 p.m.), and 1990’s four-hour La Belle Noiseuse on Jan. 20 at 2 p.m. The latter preserves the most fascinating artist-model conflict in film history, a battle of wills between Michel Piccoli as a methodical and demanding painter and Emmanuelle Beart as his reluctant nude subject.

Screenings are at the East Building auditorium, Fourth Street and Constitution Avenue Northwest. Free. An early arrival is often advisable. 202/847-6799. The National Gallery series will be extended by additional programs at La Maison Francaise, the French Embassy, in late February.

— Gary Arnold

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