View Photo Gallery: Socially engaged art is the subject of a group show at the Art Museum of the Americas in which artists address such issues as the environment, homelessness, immigration and violence.

Conceptual art isn’t always pretty, considering that there’s often more wall text to read than art on the wall. It can be especially tricky if it’s issue-oriented conceptual art, which sometimes involves public actions and political activism that took place off-site.

Just how do you fit all that in a gallery?

The Art Museum of the Americas certainly tries with “The Ripple effect: Currents of Socially Engaged Art.” The group show, a collaboration between the museum and the Washington Project for the Arts, tackles such hot-button issues as homelessness, the economy, gun violence and the environment, among others. It’s a thoughtful and at times poignant show, even when it strays a little too close to campaign rhetoric.

Read my review, and check out a selection of images from the show in the gallery at the top of this post.