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KIDS ROCKWELL will be open open daily 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. through April 29.

Americans Who Tell the Truth: Portraits by Robert Shetterly

From July 1, 2023 to October 8, 2023

Location: Special Projects Gallery (Floor 2)

Many American citizens want to use their voice to bring about significant change in the world around them. But what does that look like?

Robert Shetterly’s Americans Who Tell the Truth series portrays heroic individuals who have dedicated their lives to improving their local and national communities. Each portrait shares a story of someone fighting for social, racial, economic or environmental justice. The paintings are a form of narrative activism in which Robert Shetterly shares the stories of people in our past and present who are fighting for social, racial, economic and environmental justice. When we are faced with making difficult decisions about questions of justice and morality, we can look to these truth-tellers as examples of selflessness and perseverance.

This exhibition is curated and generously supported by The Rockwell Museum’s Board of Trustees. Each Trustee selected a portrait of someone whose life and work resonates with them. Alongside each painting, you can find the Truth Teller’s biography and a label by our Board of Trustees describing their selection. If you’re interested in learning more about these notable American citizens, scan the QR codes on the artwork labels to see additional information on Shetterly’s website.

Shirley Chisholm

Maja Kazazic

John Muir

Stacey Abrams

Sherri Mitchell

Frederick Douglass

John Lewis

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About the Artist

Robert Shetterly

Robert Shetterly was born in 1946 in Cincinnati, Ohio, and graduated in 1969 from Harvard College with a degree in English Literature. The direction of his career and his creative output changed when he took drawing courses in college. The portraits in this gallery combine his interests in visual arts (images, image-making) and the written word. Like many of his sitters, Shetterly was also active in the Civil Rights movement and the Anti-Vietnam War movement.