At midnight last night, the U.S. government announced a partial shutdown for the first time in 17 years. The Federal government was asked to scale back services as a result of the failure between House Republicans and the Democratic-controlled Senate to agree on Obamacare. For the art world, this means that federally funded museums have also closed their doors.
In D.C. the 19 Smithsonian-owned museums have officially closed, as the Smithsonian tweeted this morning at 7 a.m. This includes the National Zoo, the National Air and Space Museum, the Hirshhorn Museum, and the New York and D.C. branches of the Museum of the American Indian.
Due the federal government shutdown, the Hirshhorn is closed. Museum programming and events are also canceled.— hirshhorn (@hirshhorn) October 1, 2013
According to the Smithsonian's twitter account (which will only be used to inform people of the #shutdown), all museum programming and events are also cancelled.
Loyal museum-goers have responded to the Smithsonian's tweets with concern and sympathy for the plight of museum employees.