If you’re looking for something to do in the week ahead that’s both free and hassle-free, you’ve come to the right place.


Nam June Paik’s 1995 “Electronic Superhighway” shows different video footage in each state. (Smithsonian American Art Museum)

MONDAY
Poetry Out Loud

Start your week off with class at the Smithsonian’s Portrait Gallery. The district finals in the National Recitation Contest feature readings of anthologized poems by area teenagers.

6 p.m. National Portrait Gallery, Eighth and F streets NW. 202-633-1000.

TUESDAY
Irresistible Revolution

How has the movement for marriage equality moved so quickly? How have politicians embraced or challenged LGBT advocates? Author and activist Urvashi Vaid talks about her new book, “Irresistible Revolution,” and the state of LGBT politics in light of contemporary race, class and gender issues.

6:30 p.m. Busboys & Poets, 2021 14th St NW. 202-387-7638.

WEDNESDAY
Films of Nam June Paik

Art films may sound intimidating, but these key works are as brief as they are acclaimed. As part of a retrospective on the revolutionary video artist, the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum is screening eight short films by Nam June Paik and his contemporaries.

6:30 p.m. Smithsonian American Art Museum, Eighth and F streets NW. 202-633-1000.

THURSDAY
Ralitza Patcheva

As part of the Catholic University of America’s ongoing Washington International Piano series, which features performers from Italy, China and elsewhere, faculty member Ralitza Patcheva will perform works by Schubert, Schumann and Brahms.

8 p.m. Catholic University, Ward Recital Hall, 620 Michigan Ave. NE. 202-319-5416.

FRIDAY
Codex Mexico” opening

The exhibit “Codex Mexico” celebrates the legacy of Mexico’s involvement in printed art and artists working in the realm. Admission is free, but an RSVP to rsvp@instituteofmexicodc.org is required.

6:30 p.m. Mexican Cultural Institute, 2829 16th St. NW. 202-728-1628.

SATURDAY
“Learning Japanese Culture”

The Young Readers Center at the Library of Congress takes part in the National Cherry Blossom Festival with this children’s activity on Japanese culture. Kids will have a chance to try their hand at origami and try on a kimono.

10 a.m. Library of Congress, Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. SE. 202-707-5000.

SUNDAY
Annapolis Film Festival

Take a chance on a student filmmaker with an afternoon of short films by high school, college and graduate students from noon to 4:30 p.m. Running concurrently at 1:30 p.m. is a free screening of “Bert Stern: Original Mad Man,” which examines the golden age of American advertising.

Noon. Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, 801 Chase St., Annapolis. 410-263-3023.