Both Roosevelt and Lincoln understood that the life of the arts, far from being an interruption, a distraction, in the life of a nation, is very close to the center of a nation’s purpose – and is a test of the quality of a nation’s civilization…art is the great unifying and humanizing experience.” – John F. Kennedy
It is with great pleasure that Pinellas County art leaders, curators and partners Elizabeth Brincklow and Mary Childs announce a selection of paintings by St. Petersburg artists Nathan Beard, D Yael Kelley, and David Bender, former Pinellas County resident now living in Windermere, and glass artworks including work by Vasile Loznianu from Duncan McClellan Gallery* have been accepted for the US Department of State’s Art in Embassies Program and their international registry. For the three-four year loan period, a total of thirteen (13) artworks will be exhibited by Ambassador Ronald D. and Mrs. Johnson for their venues in San Salvador.
“We are so pleased that our artists have been accepted and are now registered in this prestigious program.” stated Brincklow, “We are honored to assist the US Department of State’s mission because it promotes cultural diplomacy through the presentation of works by outstanding American and international artists to a wide group of audiences around the world.”
“Art communicates directly,” stated D Yael Kelley in keeping with the mission of the Art in Embassies program. “It speaks soul to soul, heart to heart without need of language, and beyond borders. I am so honored for this opportunity to connect and to represent a small example of the vast creativity that is America.”
Upon the selection of his artwork, Nathan Beard stated, “to know that my work could play even the most subtle role in diplomacy and fostering fruitful relationships with neighbors, friends and possibly foe, is truly an honor.”
For over five decades, Art in Embassies (AIE) has played a leading role in U.S. public diplomacy through a focused mission of vital cross-cultural dialogue and understanding through the visual arts and dynamic artist exchange. The Museum of Modern Art first envisioned this global visual arts program in 1953, and President John F. Kennedy formalized it at the U.S. Department of State in 1963. Today, Art in Embassies is an official visual arts office within the U.S. Department of State, engaging over 20,000 participants globally, including artists, museums, galleries, universities, and private collectors. It encompasses over 200 venues in 189 countries. Professional curators and registrars create and ship about 60 exhibitions per year, and since 2000, over 70 permanent collections have been installed in the Department’s diplomatic facilities throughout the world.
Ambassador Ronald D. Johnson was appointed by President Donald J. Trump as the United States Ambassador to the Republic of El Salvador on July 3, 2019. Ambassador Johnson has a broad spectrum of experience with over four decades of service and leadership in the U.S. government and with substantive engagement on a wide range of regional issues including refugees, counter-narcotics, counter terrorism, human rights and tropical virus disease control. He has also served as a Senior Advisor to the Commander of the U.S. Southern Command in Miami, Florida, where he managed interagency collaboration and provided geo-political advice.
* Other national glass artworks selected from Duncan McClellan Gallery include Alex Bernstein, Cynthia Miller, Jacob Stout & Peter Wright.