National Veterans Art Museum to Participate in Blue Star Museums

National Veterans Art Museum is one of more than 1,800 museums across America to offer free admission to military personnel and their families this summer in collaboration with the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, and the Department of Defense

Chicago, Ill. –(ENEWPSF)—May 21, 2013 – Today the National Veterans Art Museum (NVAM) announced the launch of Blue Star Museums, a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 1,800 museums across America to offer free admission to all active duty military personnel and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day 2013. Leadership support has been provided by MetLife Foundation through Blue Star Families. The complete list of participating museums is available at www.arts.gov/bluestarmuseums.

In honor of Memorial Day, the NVAM will also open its newest exhibition, Tenacity and Truth, a curated exhibition from the permanent collection. Tenacity and Truth features work that was created by artists both trained and untrained who share in the overwhelming need to express their experiences through a visual language and explores the creative process behind veteran art. Tenacity and Truth opens on Saturday, May 25 with a reception that is free and open to the public from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Levi Moore, Executive Director of the NVAM, praised Blue Star Museums, adding, “We are pleased to join this wonderful group of art institutions in acknowledging the service of nearly 1.5 million servicemen and women and of an additional 100,000 reserve members of the military. Although we offer free admission year-round to active military and their families, this event is another opportunity to show our support and gratitude for their service and sacrifice.”

Congressman Mike Quigley, of the 5th District, commended both organizations, stating, “The Blue Star Museums partnership is a wonderful opportunity to say thank you to the brave men and women who serve our country and to the military families who sacrifice so much. The National Veterans Art Museum is an outstanding resource in our district, and I’m very proud of their continued efforts to give back to the community through programs like the Blue Star Museums.”

Alderman John Arena, of the 45th Ward, celebrated their involvement. “Since relocating to Portage Park NVAM has developed a solid partnership with a community where so many veterans live and work. Once again, they are showing their commitment to honoring those who have served our nation by becoming a Blue Star Museum.”

“Blue Star Museums is a collaboration between the arts and military communities,” said NEA Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa. “Our work with Blue Star Families and with more than 1,800 museums ensures that we can reach out to military families and thank them for their service and sacrifice.”

“Blue Star Museums is something that service members and their families look forward to every year and we are thrilled with the continued growth of the program,” said Blue Star Families CEO Kathy Roth-Douquet. “Through this distinctive collaboration between Blue Star Families, the National Endowment for the Arts and more than 1,800 museums across the United States, service members and their families can connect with our national treasures with this unparalleled opportunity to visit some of the country’s finest museums for free.”

This year, more than 1,800 (and counting) museums in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and American Samoa are taking part in the initiative, including more than 450 new museums this year. Museums are welcome to join Blue Star Museums throughout the summer. The effort to recruit museums has involved partnerships with the American Association of Museums, the Association of Art Museum Directors, the Association of Children’s Museums, the American Association of State and Local History, and the Association of Science-Technology Centers. This year’s Blue Star Museums represent not just fine arts museums, but also science museums, history museums, nature centers, and 75 children’s museums. Among this year’s new participants are the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, California, Grand Traverse Lighthouse Museum in Northport, Michigan, the Totem Heritage Center in Ketchikan, Alaska, and the World Museum of Mining in Butte, Montana.

About Blue Star Museums 
Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 1,800 museums across America.

The program runs from Memorial Day, May 27, 2013 through Labor Day, September 2, 2013. The free admission program is available to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, which includes active duty U.S. military – Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, as well as members of the National Guard and Reserve, U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps – and up to five family members. Please see the chart of the acceptable IDs (PDF). Some special or limited-time museum exhibits may not be included in this free admission program. For questions on particular exhibits or museums, please contact the museum directly. To find out which museums are participating, visit www.arts.gov/bluestarmuseums. The site includes a list of participating museums and a map to help with visit planning.

Museums that wish to participate in Blue Star Museums may contact  [email protected], or Wendy Clark at 202-682-5451.

This is the latest NEA program to bring quality arts programs to the military, veterans, and their families. Other NEA programs for the military have included the NEA/Walter Reed Healing Arts Partnership; Great American Voices Military Base Tour; and Shakespeare in American Communities Military Base Tour.

About Blue Star Families 
Blue Star Families is a national, nonprofit network of military families from all ranks and services, including guard and reserve, dedicated to supporting, connecting and empowering military families. With our partners, Blue Star Families hosts a robust array of morale and empowerment programs, including Books on Bases, Blue Star Museums, Operation Honor Corp, Blue Star Careers and Operation Appreciation. Blue Star Families also works directly with the Department of Defense and senior members of local, State and Federal government to bring the most important military family issues to light. Working in concert with fellow nonprofits, community advocates, and public officials, Blue Star Families raises awareness of the challenges and strengths of military family life and works to make military life more sustainable. Our worldwide membership includes military spouses, children, parents, and friends, as well as service members, veterans and civilians. To learn more about Blue Star Families, visit http://www.bluestarfam.org.

About the National Endowment for the Arts 
The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA at arts.gov.

About Tenacity and Truth
On Saturday, May 25, 2013, the National Veterans Art Museum (NVAM) will host the opening of Tenacity and Truth: People, Places and Memories, a brand-new exhibit showcasing works from the permanent collection. It features work that was created by artists both trained and untrained who share in the overwhelming need to express their experiences through a visual language and explores the creative process behind veteran art. Admission to the NVAM will be free all day with light refreshments offered from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Artist talks will take place throughout the afternoon. Visit www.nvam.org for more information.

About the National Veterans Art Museum
The National Veterans Art Museum is dedicated to the collection, preservation, and exhibition of art inspired by combat and created by veterans. No other gallery in the world focuses on the subject of war from an artistic perspective, making this collection truly unique. The National Veterans Art Museum addresses both historical and contemporary issues related to military service in order to give patrons of all backgrounds insight into the effects of war and to provide veterans an artistic outlet to work through their military and combat experiences.

The National Veterans Art Museum is located at 4041 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago, Illinois. The National Veterans Art Museum will be open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission is free. For group admission reservations, call the Museum at 312/326-0270 or visit www.nvam.org.

Patrons of the museum can access art from the permanent collection and biographical information on the artists through the NVAM Collection Online, a recently launched online and high-resolution archive of every piece of art in the museum’s permanent collection. The NVAM Collection Online can be found at www.nvam.org/collection-online.

Source: nvam.org