Futures Exhibit

The Futures Exhibit at the recently opened Smithsonian Arts and Industries building has a fricken' flying car!

Next date: May 26, 2022 10:00 am

Just show up! You don't need tickets.

Open Thursday – Sunday (CLOSED Monday – Wednesday).

You have got to see this exhibit.  If, for nothing else, to experience the newly reopened Arts and Industries building on the National Mall, now restored to its 19th Century glory.  Located next to the Smithsonian Castle, this building has been closed (and promising to reopen any day now) for the past decade.  Opening briefly for the last Folklife Festival, the public got a taste of what it must have been like to walk through this vast space in a corset, back when it first opened in 1876.

Now the museum is open permanently, and is housing the Futures exhibit, which celebrates America’s history of innovation with interactives, experiments, inventions, speculative designs, and major art installations.

There’s plenty of odes to America’s utopian bent, including promotional materials for Soul City, NC, a Civil Rights era housing development which aimed to help African Americans escape the colonialism of housing projects of the time.

A patent model of a classroom desk from the Smithsonian Futures exhibit
A patent model of a classroom desk from the Smithsonian Futures exhibit

The exhibit also showcases a number of concept pieces from the present day, giving you a glimpse of what the future of America might look like.  From friendly, interactive sculptures, to flying cars.

No, it's not a man-dryer, it's a passenger pod in the Virgin Hyperloop, which soon take you from DC to Philly in 20 minutes.
No, it’s not a man-dryer, it’s a passenger pod in the Virgin Hyperloop, which might someday take you from DC to Philly in 20 minutes.