Event Calendar

Date(s) Sort descending Event Event Type Region

The first comprehensive traveling exhibition devoted to Norman Rockwell's iconic depictions of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's Four Freedoms: Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom of Want, and Freedom of Fear. 

Rockwell, Roosevelt, & the Four Freedoms explores the indelible odyssey of humanity’s greatest ideals. 

The notion of the Four Freedoms has inspired dozens of national constitutions across the globe, yet Franklin D. Roosevelt’s declaration that the United States was willing to fight for Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, and Freedom from Fear—now considered a sublime moment in rhetorical history—did not turn out to be the immediate triumph envisioned by the President. As the nation found itself sliding ever closer to direct involvement in World War II, the underlying meaning of his words captured surprisingly little attention among Americans. Following his January 6, 1941, Annual Message to Congress, government surveys showed that only half of Americans were aware of FDR’s Four Freedoms and that less than a quarter could identify them correctly. Moreover, many had no clear idea why the United States was being called upon to enter the war. 

It would take the continuous efforts of the White House, the Office of War Information, and scores of patriotic artists to give the Four Freedoms new life. Most prominent among those was Norman Rockwell, whose images became a national sensation in early 1943 when they were first published in The Saturday Evening Post. Roosevelt’s words and Rockwell’s artworks soon became inseparable in the public consciousness, with millions of reproductions publicizing the Second War Loan Drive bringing the Four Freedoms directly into American homes and workplaces. When Eleanor Roosevelt convinced United Nations delegates to include these ideals in its postwar statement of human rights, FDR’s words—now forever entwined with Rockwell’s images—achieved immortality. 

Born amid the turmoil of World War II, the Four Freedoms have since become one of its greatest legacies, a testament to the paramount importance of human rights and dignity. Brought forward by one of America’s greatest presidents and immortalized by one of its most beloved artists more than seventy-five years ago, the Four Freedoms continue to inspire, resonating across generations as strongly today as they did in their time. 

CO-PRESENTING MAY 25, 2018 - SEPTEMBER 2, 2018: 

OCTOBER 13, 2018 - JANUARY 13, 2019: 
20900 Oakwood Blvd. 

FEBRUARY 9, 2019 - MAY 6, 2019: 
701 21st Street, NW 

JUNE 4, 2019 - OCTOBER 27, 2019: 
Le Mémorial de Caen 
Esplanade Général Eisenhower 
CS 55026 
14050 Caen Cedex 4 

DECEMBER 15, 2019 - MARCH 22, 2020: 
1001 Bissonnet 

FALL 2020: 
9 Glendale Rd / Rte 183 

The New-York Historical Society 
170 Central Park West 
at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street)

New York, NY

More info
Exhibits International
February 16, 2019 - December 31, 2020 John James Audubon’s The Birds of America

Today only about 200 complete sets of The Birds of America exist. The Museum’s set, bound in four leather portfolios, was acquired by the State of North Carolina in 1848 and kept for more than a century at the State Library before being transferred to the Museum. The hand-colored engravings were recently conserved and rebound. In the new Audubon Gallery, the NCMA presents Audubon’s work in special cases designed for each of the enormous “double elephant” volumes, with hydraulic lifts that allow staff access so that the pages can be turned periodically to display a new selection of birds. 

Tue – Thu 10am – 5pm 
Fri 10am – 9pm 
Sat & Sun 10am – 5pm 
Closed Mondays & some holidays 

2110 Blue Ridge Road

Raleigh, NC

More info
Exhibits Mid-Atlantic
September 12, 2019 - September 30, 2020 Comic Art: 120 Years of Panels & Pages

Welcome to the world of comic art, where a wide variety of visual and narrative storytelling styles have evolved from panels in early newspapers to contemporary comic images. Through unique original drawings and printed pages, this exhibition features the artistic skills of master artists and emerging talents who have created some of the most famous, funny, and frightening characters to appear in print.

One early comic figure, the Yellow Kid, debuted in a full-size panel in the color pages of the New York World newspaper in 1895 and sparked the rise of comics as a popular new American art form. By the mid-1900s, in addition to the growing number of mainstream comic creators, diverse independent artists were creating comic art that examined their own life stories and commented on culture and politics. These innovators and change makers expanded the art form to include mini comics, graphic novels, fanzines, and web comics.

The lively visual content, dramatic narrative, and strong character development found in comics have attracted devoted audiences who follow the latest installment in whatever format the story appears. Over time, comic art and its characters have permeated film, television, books, and marketing—making characters familiar to viewers who may or may not read comics themselves.

Mon - Sat 8:30am – 4:30pm
Sunday: Closed

Graphic Arts Galleries, Ground Floor
Libray of Congress
Thomas Jefferson Building
10 First Street, SE

Washington, DC

More info
Exhibits Mid-Atlantic
January 8, 2020 - July 31, 2020 Subversion & The Art of Slavery Abolition

Art denotes strategy, ingenuity, and imagination. While slaveholders and vigilantes threatened and attempted to control Black bodily autonomy in various ways across the Atlantic world, enslaved people and their allies artfully countered this malevolence via everyday and more formally coordinated kinds of resistance. With a principal focus on American and British efforts, this exhibition highlights how slavery abolitionists used a diversity of art, including rebellion, speeches and pamphlets, novels, slave narratives, newspapers, poetry, music, and the visual arts, to agitate for enslaved peoples’ right to liberty and equality.

Mon, Thu - Sat    10 AM–6 PM
Tue & Wed 10am – 8pm

The Lapidus Center for the Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
515 Malcolm X Blvd. (135th St & Malcolm X Blvd)

New York, NY

More info
Exhibits Mid-Atlantic
January 16, 2020 - August 31, 2020 The Book Beautiful: Margaret Armstrong & Her Bindings

Margaret Armstrong was one of the most sought-after artists in an almost forgotten chapter in the history of book publishing—the golden age of the decorated book cover (1890-1915). During Armstrong’s remarkable career, more than a million books with her covers made their way into homes and libraries across America. By 1895 the beauty of Armstrong’s cover designs had placed her as a preeminent talent in an art that publishers had come to value highly. Most of her commissions were from three major publishing houses (Scribner, Putnam and Bobbs-Merrill), although in all she worked for 21 different publishers.

Today Armstrong’s covers are once again prized by scholars, educators and collectors. Her book covers here at the Library are among the prize jewels in our collection. The Book Beautiful:  Margaret Armstrong & Her Bindings highlights Armstrong’s exquisite covers and, for the first time, the Armstrong family’s long connection to our Library. 

This exhibition showcases some of Armstrong’s most exquisite covers (curated by Head of Special Collections Barbara Bieck), along with historic photographs and documents.

Mon & Fri 9am - 5pm
Tue, Wed & Thu 9am - 8pm
Sat & Sun 11am - 5pm

Open to the public

Members' Room/Peluso Family Exhibition Gallery
for members & guests
free of charge, registration required

Peluso Family Exhibition Gallery
The New York Society Library
53 East 79th Street

New York, NY

More info
Exhibits Mid-Atlantic