|NMAI Celebrates 1st Decade with|
Honorees Whoopi Goldberg, Tom Wolfe
and the National Arts Club
July 29, 2010
Tom Wolfe, Judy Cutler, Laurence Cutler & Whoopi Goldberg
July 29th, the National Museum of American Illustration (NMAI)
celebrated its 10th Anniversary in grand Newport Gilded Age style,
honoring Whoppi Goldberg, Tom Wolfe and the National Arts Club (NAC)
with the inaugural American Civilization Awards before 350 guests at
President Bill Clinton, unable to attend due to a
family wedding, wrote: "By preserving and celebrating a vital part of
our nation's artistic heritage, the NMAI has enriched our culture and
inspires visitors from across American and around the world."
gala benefited the endowment fund of the American Civilization
Foundation, the IRS approved 501-c-3 non-profit organization which
operates and administers the NMAI.
Tom Wolfe's Manifesto on the State of Modern Art
Author Tom Wolfe, also an artist, delivered a manifesto on the growing
significance of illustration art and the rapidly declining quality of
American Modern Art.
Tom Wolfe Delivering Speech
Below are excerpts from Wolfe's Manifesto Address:
"Starting with Picasso... the history of modern art has been getting worse and worse on the skill level...
by Abstract Expressionism, and it's hard to get much worse than that in
a technical, skillful sense, but they found ways...
Then came Pop Art. Pop Art was the first no hands art. In other words, no Pop Art painting was ever an original...
Then there was Minimalism and there was almost nothing there...
Then came Conceptual Art where it was just the concept of the art which was all that mattered.
now we are finally down to No Hands Art and Tenure Art... and already
the signs are showing that people are beginning to realize that
illustrators were and are the people who cannot finesse skill. They
cannot say, I'm not going to use that old fashion stuff, because that's
what everything depends on. And these artists that are at the National
Museum of American Illustration are made of tremendous talent and
dedication to the craft. If you look at the ones who left school
early... not to play basketball, but to study art. Rockwell's a very
good example. Howard Chandler Christy's a very good example. These are
men are amongst the last great skillful artists in America.
did 321 covers for the 'Saturday Evening Post,' that was very big time.
But J.C. Leyendecker outdid him by one I believe, 322. Both just
absolutely great, great artists. And today we can see the whole thing
here tonight to tell Laurence and Judy they've done it. This is the
10th anniversary. Thanks in no small part to Judy and Laurence, Norman
Rockwell is the Picasso of the 21st Century."
For a full transcript of Tom Wolfe's Speech, please Click Here
to download the complete text.
Whoopi Goldberg Received an American Civilization Award
for Contributions to American Popular Culture
Whoopi receiving award from Museum Co-Founders, Laurence and Judy Cutler
her acceptance speech, Whoopi expressed her personal interest in and
love of illustration art. "Beauty. It's all about beauty because there
is so much ugliness in the world that it would be wonderful, I thought,
to come someplace where there were some gorgeous things to look at."
also said the NMAI has delved into the scholarly aspects of
illustration in ways never looked at before. The underlying story of
American illustration should be told so that it enters the public
consciousness and everybody understands the origins of these images and
their continuing significance to our culture.
National Arts Club Honored with American Civilization Award
Aldon James, Club President, gives acceptance speech with Museum Co-Founders, Laurence and Judy Cutler
his acceptance speech for the National Arts Club, Club president Aldon
James remarked: "You both (Judy & Laurence Cutler) are now a 'new
planet' within an art solar system and you have your unique
gravitational force... You are an inspirational team and you have the
Club's support without any restrictions."
Guests enjoy cocktails on Vernon Court's Marble Terrace
Ellen and Mike Sandler
(Left to Right) NMAI Board Member Darwin Lin, Pearl Tan Lee Choo, Sharon Bush,
Honoree Aldon James, Babette Bloch, NMAI Board Member Marc Mellon
Sherry & John Pearlstein and Marla & Richard Milgram
Pulitzer Prize Winning Editorial Cartoonist, Paul Szep and Maureen Boerre
Jill Perkins, Sara Bliss & Ebbie Koelle display American Civilization Awards
Guests gather as the evening's program begins
Christine Shannon shows Norman Rockwell work at Petite Auction
Jill Perkins displays J.C. Leyendecker work during the evening's Petite Auction
Soul Sound Revue
Dancing to the Soul Sound Revue
National Museum of American Illustration
492 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI 02840
T: 401-851-8949 ext. 18. F: 401-851-8974
The Museum is open year-round for visitors and Group Tours by advance reservations.
General Admissions Hours begin Memorial Day weekend, May 28, 2010.
General Admissions Hours (May 29th - September 6th)
Saturdays: 10:00am - 4:30pm
Sundays: 11:00am - 4:30pm
Memorial Day, July 4th, & Labor Day: 11:00am - 4:30pm
Guided Tours Without Reservations (May 29th - September 6th)
Fridays: 75 minute guided tour at 3:00pm sharp
Adults: $18; Seniors (60+) & Military: $16; Students w/id: $12;
Children ages 5 to 12: $8. Children ages 5 to 12 are permitted only if
they are vouchsafed by parents or guardians as being 'well-behaved.'
National Museum of American Illustration is a nonprofit, independent,
educational and aesthetic organization. It is located in Newport, RI,
on Bellevue Avenue at Vernon Court (1898), a Carrére and Hastings
designed Beaux-Arts adaptation of an 18th century French chateau. It is
the first national museum devoted exclusively to American illustration
art. Illustration consists of original artwork created to be reproduced
in books, magazines, newspapers, and advertisements. 'Golden Age'
paintings by such luminaries as Norman Rockwell, Maxfield Parrish, NC
Wyeth, JC Leyendecker, and 75 others are displayed in 'Gilded Age'
architecture, creating a unique union of architecture and art - a
national treasure. The Museum is administered by the American
Civilization Foundation, a nonprofit organization with the goal to
present the best possible venue for appreciating the greatest
collection of illustration art - the most American of American art.
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