Speaking on Capitol Hill About the Eisenhower Memorial on July 18

Capitol Hill Luncheon and
Briefing on the Eisenhower Memorial
July 18, 2014, at Noon
Rayburn House Office Building, room 2247
The National Civic Art Society cordially invites you to a lunch briefing on the planned National Eisenhower Memorial. The briefing will cover the status of the imperiled design by Frank Gehry and the alternatives before Congress. A box lunch will be provided.

Speakers will include:


 The Hon. Bruce Cole, the former Chairman of the National Endowment of the Humanities, and President Obama’s appointee to the Eisenhower Memorial Commission



 Justin Shubow, President of the National Civic Art Society



Catesby Leigh, art and architecture critic

Background:  After 15 years and $40 million spent, the wildly unpopular design for the Eisenhower Memorial is on life support. Not a shovel of dirt has been turned, Congress zeroed all construction funding, and the National Capital Planning Commission denied preliminary approval. Most recently, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior and Environment voted to eliminate the proposal altogether.


Designed by the fashionable “starchitect” Frank Gehry, the plan been criticized from all sides — including the Eisenhower family (see John Eisenhower’s letter here) as well as by numerous members of Congress, pundits, and art critics of all political and artistic orientations (see compilation here). Opponents of the design believe that a more traditional design selected by an open, democratic competition would cost far less and be completed faster.


Projected Cost $142 million — and threatens to rise. 


Those Invited to Attend: Members of the House and Senate and upper-level staff with responsibilities in the arts, public lands, GSA, the Park Service, and related agencies. (No interns please.) Also welcome are: Members and staff of the National Capital Planning Commission, the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, concerned citizens, and the media.


R.S.V.P.: If you have not already done so, please reserve your place at Eventbrite as soon as possible. Space is limited.  Closest Metro is Capitol South. Call or email Fran Griffin at 703-255-2211 with any questions.

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