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Statue / monument of John F. Kennedy in Washington DC by Sculptor Robert Berks  Subject: John F. Kennedy
 Year: 1971
 Sculptor: Robert Berks
 Location: Foggy Bottom
( F & New Hampshire )

The notion of a national theater goes back to the 1800s but it wasn't until the Eisenhower Administration (1957) that Congress passed legilation authorizing a performing arts center. Upon his election to the presidency, John Kennedy and his wife Jacqueline adopted the arts center as one of their many projects to beautify Washington DC. When Kennedy was tragically assassinated in 1963, the Federal Government asked the Kennedy family what type of memorial should be built in his memory. The family asked that the new performing arts center be named for him.

The bust of President Kennedy was designed by Robert Berks, who also produced the statues of Albert Einstein and Mary McLeod Bethune. It stands in the Grand Foyer of the Kennedy Center. Seen from one angle, the face looks young and filled with idealism; seen from the other angle, the face looks older, more tired, and contemplative.

Photos and text copyright © 2001 Jean K. Rosales and Michael R. Jobe, All Rights Reserved

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