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The Face of Battle: Americans at War, 9/11 to Now


  • National Portrait Gallery 8th & F Street NW Washington, DC 20001 (map)
John / Vincent Valdez (born 1977) / Oil on canvas, 2010-2012 / Collection of the artist, © Vincent Valdez

John / Vincent Valdez (born 1977) / Oil on canvas, 2010-2012 / Collection of the artist, © Vincent Valdez

“The Face of Battle: Americans at War, 9/11 to Now” focuses on the psychological impact and consequences of modern warfare on those who serve. The exhibition includes more than 50 objects that convey the reality of the modern soldier within the context of a culture that has, in many ways, normalized warfare. 

The exhibition is a continuation of the “Portraiture Now” series, devoted to bringing visibility to formal developments in the field of portraiture. Six featured artists offer an emotional and psychological perspective of battle and its repercussions: Ashley Gilbertson, Tim Hetherington, Louie Palu, Stacy Pearsall, Emily Prince and Vincent Valdez. Through portraits of deployed soldiers in combat and off duty and representations of empty bedrooms and of lives lost, these artists forge a stronger connection to the personal ramifications of war and reveal deeper perspectives on the lives affected. It is on view through Jan. 28, 2018.