Medal of Arts Press

Art Diplomacy

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presents the State Department Medal of Arts to Chinese artist Cai Guoqiang at a ceremony on Friday in Washington. Cai was among five international and American artists awarded for work that promotes understanding across cultures. The event also marked the 50th anniversary of the department’s Art in Embassies program. […]

State’s Hillary Clinton celebrates marriage of art and diplomacy

Chinese-born artist Cai Guo-Qiang presents one of his remarkable “explosion events,”where a 40-foot pine tree erupts in a shimmer of fireworks as if in a “tree lighting” ceremony, followed by a cascade of black ink-like smoke that mimics traditional Chinese brush drawings. Fifty years after the Kennedy administration started a small-scale effort to place American […]

Hillary Clinton Honors Photographer Carrie Mae Weems with State Dept. Medal

Photographer Carrie Mae Weems received a State Department medal from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at a luncheon on Friday, November 30, at the State Department in Washington, D.C. Clinton honored Weems and four other artists—Jeff Koons, Cai Guo-Qiang, Shahzia Sikander and Kiki Smith—with the first U.S. Department of State Medals of Arts ever awarded. […]

Clinton to award US State medal for arts to Pakistani artist

US State Department selects Shahzia Sikander among five artists to receive recognition for their art in US embassies. PHOTO: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will award the US State Department Medal of Arts to Pakistani painter Shahzia Sikander, along with four other artists, reported LA Times. This is the first time this award […]

Wilson Center Medal of Arts Conversation

On November 29, 2012, as part of its 50th anniversary celebration, Art in Embassies (AIE), U.S. Department of State, joined with the Aspen Institute, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center to present a conversation with the five recipients of the Medal of Arts, awarded by […]

Today: A Tree Blows Up on the National Mall

In what may be one of the first planned explosions on the National Mall, Chinese artist Cai Guo-Qiang is expected to blow up a 40-foot pine tree this afternoon in honor of the Sackler Gallery’s 25th anniversary and the 50th anniversary of the Art in Embassies program. Using 2,000 firework-like explosives, Guo-Qiang will take the […]

Hillary Clinton will give five artists medals for embassy art

For 50 years the U.S. State Department has been deploying visual art as part of the art of diplomacy, via a program called Art in Embassies. On Friday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will give the U.S. State Department Medal of Arts to five artists who have shown “an enduring commitment” to the effort: Jeff […]

Syracuse artist Carrie Mae Weems will receive award from Secretary Hillary Clinton

There are different approaches of diplomacy to broker peace and understanding. Cultural programs can serve as a bridge between people and nations. One cultural emissary is photographer and video artist Carrie Mae Weems. She will be honored by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in an awards ceremony Friday at the State Department. Weems will receive […]
Carrie Mae Weems being honored by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
Jeff Koons being honored by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Jeff Koons Receives a Medal of Honor From The Department of State

Jeff Koons discusses his work on the occasion of being bestowed with a Medal from Department of State, as part of the 50th anniversary of the “Art in Embassies” cultural exchange program. Of the international reception to his art, Koons says, “…Americans are more intimidated by art, and they haven’t really come to realize that […]

Hillary Clinton Will Give Koons, Cai Guo-Qiang, and More State Department’s First Arts Medals

In a luncheon ceremony tomorrow at the State Department’s Diplomatic Reception Rooms in Washington, D.C., U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will honor five contemporary artists — Jeff Koons, Cai Guo-Qiang, Shahzia Sikander, Kiki Smith, and Carrie Mae Weems — with the department’s inaugural Medal of Arts, a new award recognizing the honorees’ commitment to […]
Cai's tree at the Sackler

Want your Christmas tree to really sparkle this year? Try adding 2,000 fireworks

Clark Griswold, National Lampoon’s master of extravagant holiday displays, has got nothing on Cai Guo-Qiang. To celebrate the Sackler Gallery’s 25th anniversary, the Chinese artist famous for his Olympic pyrotechnics display will ignite a daytime fireworks show that riffs on the Christmas tree lightings taking place around the country. At 3 p.m. Friday in front […]

Smithsonian’s Sackler Gallery Celebrates 25th Anniversary with Landmark Week of Events

In celebration of 25 years of groundbreaking exhibitions, programs and scholarship in Asian art, the Smithsonian’s Arthur M. Sackler Gallery will host a week of public events, welcoming international arts and culture aficionados. Visitors can experience an immersive 3-D “cave,” meet their favorite authors as well as attend lectures and performances by distinguished scholars and […]
Freer Sackler Peacock Room
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