Reagan Statue Joins Statuary Hall Collection

Reagan added to Statuary Hall in U.S. Capitol
Reagan added to Statuary Hall in U.S. Capitol

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and House Republican Leader John Boehner joined former first lady Nancy Reagan this morning for the unveiling of a statue of 40th President of the United States, Ronald Reagan.

The Reagan statue is now part of the National Statuary Hall Collection, which is comprised of two statues donated by individual states to honor persons notable in each state’s history. The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation led the efforts to donate the statue of our nation’s fortieth president after the California State and Assembly unanimously approved a resolution to send a statue to the Capitol in August of 2006, a request initiated by Congressmen Ken Calvert (44th District – California).

The statue, sculpted by American artist Chas Fagan of North Carolina, measures seven feet high and is cast in an everdur silicon bronze, weighing 500 pounds. It is mounted on a three foot high marble pedestal which contains the Great Seal of the Governor of California on one side and the Great Seal of the President of the United States on the other.

About Art After X

With the death of President Kennedy in 1963, America changed. As hard as it is to minimize that sentiment, the effect of Dallas was even greater. The same year saw the merging of the Dallas Museum for Contemporary Arts, which had been central to the art scene, and the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts. Douglas MacAgy, then the director of DMCA, not only opposed the merger, but also declined to directorship of the combined museum. The regionalist movement which had been strong for decades, was giving way to more of an interest in what was going on nationally, and internationally. Like it or not, Dallas was on the national stage. When the Kennedy’s arrived in Fort Worth, local collectors had decorated a hotel room with internationally-renowned works. While the president and his wife learned a great deal about the ability of Texans to collect major art, there was little they could glean about the local scene in this era-defining city. With this in mind, we have begun a project to look not back at the art scene in Dallas, but foreword from 1963. We are interviewing gallery owners, curators and others involved in the art scene then, but this will be a story told mostly through interviews with artists active in the city from that point into the 1980s. The result will be a book with a video component. We hope you will join us in our journey. The hashtag for the project is #artafterx and the url will point to the latest updates on this weblog.

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