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White House Announces 2009 National Medal of Arts Recipients
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., greets a guest as actress Sarah Jessica Parker, rear, looks on in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010, before President Barack Obama presented the awards for the 2009 National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medal. AP Photo/Charles Dharapak.
WASHINGTON, DC.- President Barack Obama presented the National Medal of Arts to ten recipients for their outstanding achievements and support of the arts. (Twelve medalists were announced; however two were not able to attend the ceremony. Their medals will be presented at another time.) The medals were presented by the president and Mrs. Michele Obama in an East Room ceremony at the White House. The National Medal of Arts is a White House initiative managed by the National Endowment for the Arts. Each year, the NEA organizes and oversees the National Medal of Arts nomination process and notifies the artists of their selection to receive a medal, the nation’s highest honor for artistic excellence.

"These individuals and organizations show us how many ways art works every day. They represent the breadth and depth of American architecture, design, film, music, performance, theatre, and visual art," said NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman. "This lifetime honor recognizes their exceptional contributions, and I join the President and the country in saluting them."

The 2009 National Medal of Arts Recipients

Individuals

• Bob Dylan, Singer, Songwriter
• Clint Eastwood, Director, Actor
• Milton Glaser, Graphic Designer
• Maya Lin, Artist, Designer
• Rita Moreno, Singer, Dancer, Actress
• Jessye Norman, Soprano
• Joseph P. Riley, Jr., Arts Patron, Design Advocate
• Frank Stella, Painter, Sculptor
• Michael Tilson Thomas, Conductor
• John Williams, Composer, Conductor

Organizations

• The Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Conservatory, Oberlin, OH
• The School of American Ballet, Ballet School, New York, NY

The National Medal of Arts, established by Congress in 1984, is awarded by the President and managed by the National Endowment for the Arts. Award recipients are selected based on their contributions to the creation, growth, and support of the arts in the United States. Each year, the Arts Endowment seeks nominations from individuals and organizations across the country. The National Council on the Arts, the Arts Endowment's presidentially-appointed and Senate-confirmed advisory body, reviews the nominations and provides recommendations to the President, who selects the recipients.




Washington | White House | President Barack Obama | National Medal of Arts | National Endowment for the Arts | Rocco Landesman |


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