The Museum of American Illustration at the Society of Illustrators presents "Air Force Art," opening September 5 through October 20, 2012. The exhibition showcases the original art from illustrators documenting the United States Air Force through a wide variety of technological and figurative works.
Shortly after the Air Force became recognized as a separate service in 1947 they received a generous donation of over 500 combat art paintings from World War II, establishing a valuable historic record of the military operations during the early twentieth century. Four years later the USAF took a group of America's most famous illustrators on tours of their bases which resulted in the creation of the Air Force Art Program. During this time, the Art Program partnered with the Society of Illustrators in organizing the nation's most prominent illustrators on missions around the world. Invitational orders required for each assignment are issued from the Secretary of the Air Force through the Director of the Art Program in the Pentagon. Since its beginning, illustrators have documented important historical events including the conflict with Iraq, the Vietnam War, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the Tsunami, and other recent on-location assignments.
Artwork will be on display in the third floor Hall of Fame Gallery at the Museum of American Illustration at the Society of Illustrators. Every two years the art displayed in the exhibition is donated to the Air Force Art Program's Collection during a formal presentation co-hosted by the Secretary and the Chief of Staff of the Air Force.