Press and guests take in the David-Apollo by Michelangelo, on loan from… (Bill O'Leary/WASHINGTON…)
→Critics’ recommendations are indicated by astrisks.
Join the Post critics Thursday at 1 p.m. during the weekly Going Out Guide chat for a conversation about their picks. You can also access interactive listings, find the latest showtimes, venue information and more events at washingtonpost.com/goingoutguide.
“(IN)balance.” The show includes 15 recent pieces that investigate the balance between natural and social forces, and between new technologies and historical styles. At Phillips Collection. Through Feb. 10.
“1001 Inventions: Discover the Golden Age of Muslim Civilization.” Surgical instruments, an elephant clock and the first camera obscura are among the artifacts collected in this traveling exhibition. At National Geographic. Through Feb. 3.
“1812: A Nation Emerges.” The War of 1812 and its place in American history are explored through portraits, stories and objects. At National Portrait Gallery.
“2012 Smithsonian Staff Photo Contest Winners.” The 36 winning entries are displayed. At S. Dillon Ripley Center. Through April 30.
→**“40 Under 40: Craft Futures.” If the words “crafting” and “decorative arts” conjure images of a grandma embroidering up a storm in her rocking chair, then this exhibition is sure to change your impression. Art installation, fashion design, sculpture and even industrial design make up this showcase of artists born since 1972, the year the Renwick was founded. At Renwick Gallery. Through Feb. 3.
“80th Annual Cumberland Valley Photographic Salon.” The annual juried exhibition sponsored in part by the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore and Columbia Bank. At Washington County Museum of Fine Arts. Through April 14.
“A Century Ago: They Came as Sovereign Leaders.” Details the visit of six Indian chiefs to President Theodore Roosevelt’s 1905 inaugural parade. At National Museum of the American Indian. Through Feb. 25.
“A Man Screaming Is Not a Dancing Bear.” The 11-minute film by Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla depicts scenes of the lower Mississippi River Delta wetlands post-Hurricane Katrina. At Baltimore Museum of Art. Through Feb. 3.
“A Will of Their Own: Judith Sargent Murray and Women of Achievement in the Early Republic.” Seven portraits of women who figured prominently during and after the American Revolution. At National Portrait Gallery. Through Sept. 2.
“Acts of Congress.” A surviving copy of the gifted keepsake, “Acts of the First Congress,” a book owned by George Washington. At Mount Vernon. Through Feb. 18.
“African Presence: Student Response.” Works by Maryland middle and high school students in response to the museum’s “Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe.” At Walters Art Museum. Through Feb. 3.
**“Ai Weiwei: According to What?” A retrospective of the Chinese contemporary artist and political activist. At Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Through Feb. 24.
→“Ai Weiwei: Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads.” The artist’s installation includes 12 zodiac-inspired animal heads. At Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Through Feb. 24.
“All Sides Considered: New Research on the Maya Collection.” Mayan treasures on display include a transnational mosaic, a pendant recycled over three millennia and a bowl that sounds like the sea. At Dumbarton Oaks Museum. Through June 2.
“American Stories.” A cross section of the museum’s collection of artifacts shows how stories and history have shaped our national identity. At National Museum of American History. Ongoing.
“Andrei Molodkin: Crude.” The Russian artist uses ballpoint-pen drawings and three-dimensional constructions to articulate the economic and social conflicts that stem from oil politics. At American University, Katzen Arts Center. Through March 17.
“Barbara Kruger: Belief + Doubt.” The entire museum space — walls, floor, escalator sides — is wrapped in text-printed vinyl by the artist, immersing visitors in halls of voices that address conflicting perceptions of democracy, power and belief. At Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Ongoing.
“Becoming the Butterfly.” Landscapes and portraits by the American artist James McNeill Whistler. At University of Virginia Art Museum. Through Aug. 4.
“Birds of Paradise.” The exhibit highlights the work of Edwin Scholes and Tim Laman who documented all 39 species of the birds living in Papua New Guinea. At National Geographic. Through May 28.
“Black Box: Democracia.” A three-channel work, “To Be and to Last (Ser y Durar),” by the Madrid-based collective formed by Pablo Espana and Ivan Lopez, captures a team of local traceurs who perform parkour in a cemetery. At Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Through March 1.
“Bob Kuhn: Drawing on Instinct.” The National Museum of Wildlife Art’s traveling exhibit stops in Virginia. At National Sporting Library and Fine Art Museum. Through Feb. 28.