Online Collection

"The State of the Union"

Object Number: 2011.034.0024
Category: Art
Type of Object: Artwork
Dimensions: 28 x 52 in. (71.1 x 132.1 cm)
Oil painting on canvas created by artist Bernadine Stetzel that depicts President Kennedy delivering his first State of the Union address.

Artist Stetzel described this piece as follows: "President Kennedy presents his first State of the Union address to Congress."

An enthusiastic supporter of John F. Kennedy, Stetzel was devastated by the assassination. Shortly after visiting the president’s gravesite at Arlington National Cemetery in 1968, she began work on a series of paintings that depicted the life of the late president. Between 1968 and 1985, with a long break in the middle, Bernadine Stetzel created 71 works that followed John F. Kennedy from his christening ceremony to the eternal flame at his gravesite.

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