Sangre de Christo Arts & Conference Center

Pueblo, CO



Selections From The Air Force Art Collection - Keeping The Peace


In celebration of the community of Pueblo, Colorado hosting the 2000 Congressional Medal of Honor Society Convention, the Sangre de Cristo Arts Center is proudly exhibiting work depicting heroism and valor during war and recognition of those who served. Two of these exhibitions both on display in the same gallery are Selections From The Air Force Art Collection and Keeping The Peace.

This extensive collection of aviation and war-related artworks is on exhibit in the White Gallery, through November 11, 2000. Acts of bravery and valor are showcased in the paintings. The works are part of the United States Air Force Art Collection, an extensive anthology of aviation housed in the Pentagon. (left: P-38 Lightning Memorial, WWII by Robert Henderson)

In following the tradition of documenting the military way of life through art, which dates to the Roman Empire, the USAF is a relative newcomer. Its collection, however, is extensive and impressive.

Established in 1950, it began with the transfer of some 800 works that portrayed the early days of its predecessor, the Army Air Corps. Soon added to the historical inventory were works by Henry Farre, a French air combat pilot-artist in World War I, Frank E. Beresford, a British artist and war correspondent in World War II and a selection of captured German art, also from World War II. (left: Retirement Party For "Old Thunderbird", acrylic on canvas by Keith Ferris)

Since 1951, an Art Program has been used to continue the documentation of Air Force service life, programs and weapons systems. Leading artists and illustrators have participated in producing and donating works following officially-sponsored trips to Air Force installations throughout the world. (left: Sabre Dance, oil & acrylic on canvas by Harley Copic)

Among this installation are magnificent American militiary airplane sculptures of Robert Henderson in his exhibition, Keeping the Peace. This notable Cañon City artist has been working for over a decade to chronicle the history of aviation in monumental wood and bronze sculptures. His works are monumental and unequaled. He has intricately replicated every significant American military airplane - be it fighter or bomber. Many are on display including his B-29 Superfortress, suspended from the gallery ceiling. It has a 20-foot wingspan. His 5,000-pound bronze P-51 Mustang, standing 11 feet tall with a 11-foot wingspan, is a temporary addition to the Jackson Sculpture Garden.

Henderson's war birds are prominent at the United States Air Force Academy and at airports and aviation museums throughout the country.

Read more about the Sangre de Cristo Arts & Conference Center in Resource Library Magazine

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This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 4/6/11

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