Portrait Exhibit Honors Fallen US Soldiers

A new exhibit called “Faces of the Fallen” opens today at Arlington National Cemetery honoring the fallen soldiers of Iraq and Afghanistan. This exhibit showcases portraits of over 1,000 soldiers by more than 100 artists.

Arranged chronologically by the individual’s time of death, the five rows of portraits stretch along a half-circle inside the entrance to the Women in Military Service for America Memorial. Below each image sits a placard with the soldier’s name, home town and date of death.

Each artist, working mostly from newspaper clippings or Internet photos sent by the families, created the portraits in the medium of their choice: paintings, sculpture, relief, collage and textiles. The diversity and individuality of the portraits display that of the soldiers. The only restrictions for the artists was the size of the 6×8 inch canvas.

One particularly poignant portrait was done by John R. Phelps, a Vietnam veteran chosen to design the World War II memorial in Lander, Wyoming. He painted his son, Marine Pfc. Clarence Phelps, who died April 9 from head wounds. — CNN

The exhibit does not contain portraits of all the fallen. Soldiers lost since November 11, 2004 will be added as their portraits are completed. Those who could not be represented due to lack of photos or other reasons are shown with a silhouetted shape.

This impressive exhibit will remain on display through September 5, 2005. Those wishing to visit the exhibit should go to the Web site — which is equally inspiring. It provides offers of reduced airfare and hotel discounts for those making the journey. After its stay in Arlington, the organization plans to take the exhibit on the road to various cities across the US and requires donation to do so.

Faces of the Fallen: Artists’ tribute to lives lost in Iraq and Afghanistan

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