DC at Night

DC at Night

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Maya Angelou Honored @National Portrait Gallery

A portrait of the great writer Maya Angelou, who died this week, has been installed in the National Portrait Gallery.

The portrait, painted by Bulgarian-born, Atlanta-based artist Ross Rossin, is an oil-on-canvas painting and was completed in 2013 in honor of Angelou’s 86th birthday.

The painting will be on view until June 12.


In collaboration with Smithsonian colleagues from the National Museum of African Art, the Portrait Gallery hosted an event on April 5, in which both museums paid tribute to Angelou, one of the most revered poets in the United States. 
Angelou, whose eighty-sixth birthday was April 4—the day before—commented on what she considered was one of her great achievements over eight decades—patience. “You can only have patience if you have courage,” she stated, adding that “Reverend [Martin Luther] King had great patience.”
During the event at the McEvoy Auditorium in the Donald W. Reynolds Center, a portrait of Angelou by Atlanta-based artist Ross Rossin was unveiled. Assisting Portrait Gallery director Kim Sajet and NMAfA director Johnnetta Cole in the unveiling was Angelou’s friend and protégé Oprah Winfrey. Guests in attendance included actress Cicely Tyson, activist Julian Bond, and former ambassador Andrew Young.
To continue reading Angelou's thoughts at the time of the ceremony about her life, which 1st appeared in the Face to Face blog of the Portrait Gallery, click here

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