February is officially Black History Month, but SITES has a strong commitment to presenting exhibitions that celebrate and explore the African American experience which you can host any time of the year. Share with your audience Romare Bearden’s vibrant collages that reimagine Homer’s "The Odyssey" or the expressive figural paintings and landscapes of seminal artist William H. Johnson.
And in Black Wings: American Dreams of Flight, the story of African American pioneers in aviation like Bessie Coleman and the Tuskegee Airmen is brought to the forefront as an important chapter in American history. IndiVisible traces the histories and experiences of people with both African American and Native American heritage in the U.S. And Jacob Lawrence Illustrates Aesop’s Fables will feature 23 powerful visual representations of these beloved tales by this important American artist. Interested? Contact us today for more information on how to host.
American Heroes Tour Begins at the National World War II Museum
American Heroes: Japanese American World War II Nisei Soldiers and the Congressional Gold Medal kicked-off its tour at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans on January 12, 2013. Eighteen Nisei veterans from 10 states participated in an opening ceremony that featured remarks by Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Megan Madeira, Hawaii’s National History Day winner, Irene Hirano-Inouye, wife of the late Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI), Dr. Nick Mueller, Museum President and CEO, Anna Cohn, SITES Director, and Christine Sato-Yamazaki, National Veterans Network Chairperson. The ceremony was followed by a luncheon with a keynote presentation by Eric K. Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
The luncheon closed with a panel discussion featuring children of Nisei soldiers, who discussed growing up with these often modest but truly remarkable veterans. Weekend celebrations included a tour of the Museum’s new U.S. Freedom Pavilion and a viewing of the “Beyond All Boundaries” 4-D movie about WWII. At a special lunch, the Museum’s Victory Belles entertained the “troops” and serenaded George Fujimoto, a veteran of the 442nd, who was celebrating his 93rd birthday. The American Heroes next stop will be at the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum in Honolulu beginning March 9, 2013.
Letters from Loved Ones
Mail Call opens on February 9th, just in time for Valentine’s Day at the Sonoma County Museum, a Smithsonian Affiliate in Santa Rosa, CA. As a tribute to the emotions often conveyed between loved ones through military mail, the opening will feature live patriotic music, letter writing and children’s drawings to be sent to current overseas veterans. The upcoming Family Day will include letter crafts, stamp activities, and V-Mail stationary coloring for kids and free admission for veterans all weekend. The "Storytelling Evening" in March will feature intimate readings of soldiers’ letters to loved-ones from the Civil War, World War II and Vietnam War-eras by a circle of regional storytellers. Letters include those from Edward D. Washington, a Civil War African-American soldier, and Jane Wandry, a combat surgical nurse who served in World War II and earned seven battle stars.