Roy Lichtenstein House 1

The National Gallery’s Sculpture Garden in Washington DC

Before we arrived for our month in DC, a curious little house in the US capital had captured the viral attention of the internet. Designed by Roy Lichtenstein, “House 1” is a piece of art found within the National Gallery’s Sculpture Garden. As you walk past the sculpture, its perspective seems to shift and follow your eye, creating a dizzying effect. It’s not until you’re fully past the house, that you realize it isn’t three-dimensional at all, but completely flat.

Roy Lichtenstein House I in Washington DC

Lichtenstein, of course, is most known for his pop art paintings, but he dabbled in sculpture. House 1 dates from 1996, but it took social media until 2023 to make this a viral online hit. Since we were going to be in DC on a three-week housesit, we had plenty of time to check out the house in person.

And although we came for the Lichtenstein, we stayed for the other sculptures. This garden is absolutely packed with fascinating works of modern art. We loved the Four-Sided Pyramid by Sol LeWitt, for example, where we spotted a bewildered squirrel hopping from cube to cube, like a mammalian Q*bert. Other works we enjoyed were the Cheval Rouge by Alexander Calder, An Entrance to the Paris Métropolitain by Hector Guimard, and the Thinker on a Rock by Barry Flanagan.

Four-Sided Pyramid by Sol LeWitt in Washington DC sculpture garden

The Garden obviously has a high concentration of them, but the entire city seems to be packed with interesting sculptures. You just have to keep your eyes open. One we spotted nearby was the Giant Blue Rooster by Katharina Fritsch on top of the National Gallery of Art. It reminded us of the Giant Blue Bear we saw in Denver, years ago.

01 Washington Art Statues DSC07256

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