Notre Dame of Maryland University is welcoming Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow and internationally renowned painter, illustrator and activist Robert Shetterly for a discussion on politics, truth telling and the use of art to effect social change.
The event, which is free and open to the public, takes place on Monday, April 16, from 7 to 9 p.m. at Notre Dame's Knott Auditorium. For additional information call Theresa Peddicord at 410-532-5524 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since 2002, Shetterly has been creating a series of paintings called “Americans Who Tell the Truth.” The project features more than 175 Americans ranging from historical icons such as Abraham Lincoln and Eleanor Roosevelt to contemporary figures like Bill Moyers, Michael Pollan and Alice Waters. The portraits, which portray individuals who have struggled for social, economic, and environmental justice throughout our history, communicate the necessity of committed, courageous citizenship to maintain democracy and are meant to provide role models. A collection of the first 50 portraits was published as an award winning book in 2005.
“One lesson that can be learned from all of these Americans is that the greatness of our country frequently depends not on the letter of the law, but the insistence of a single person that we adhere to the spirit of the law,” said Shetterly in an artist’s statement about the series. Originally intended as fifty portraits, the collection continues to grow. Shetterly explained: “The more I've learned about American history — past and present — the more people I've discovered whom I want to honor in this way.”
In his role as a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Scholar, Shetterly will spend the week of April 16-20 on the Notre Dame campus, attending classes, interacting with students, and participating in an expert panel discussion on mountaintop removal on April 18th.