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Ava DuVernay, Marian Wright Edelman, Williams Sisters All Set To Receive National Portrait Gallery Honors

Ava DuVernay, Marian Wright Edelman, Williams Sisters All Set To Receive National Portrait Gallery Honors

They’re all deserving!

Ava DuVernay, Marian Wright Edelman, and Serena and Venus Williams are all set to receive the National Portrait Gallery honor.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, The National Portrait Gallery has named their 2022 Portrait of a Nation Award honorees. Included are Oscar-winning director Ava DuVernay, longtime activist and founder of the Children’s Defense Fund Marian Wright Edelman, and superstar tennis phenoms, Serena and Venus Williams. 

The award “recognizes extraordinary individuals who have made transformative contributions to the United States and its people across numerous fields of endeavor, ranging from the arts and sciences to sports and humanitarianism.” They will be recognized for their contributions at the private Portrait of a Nation Gala event, which will feature a special performance and ceremony where each honoree will receive their award from a presenter of their choice. 

“These honorees are innovators in their respective disciplines and advocates for social causes who use their voices to care for and lift up others. The Portrait of a Nation Award reminds us that history is living and the choices people make have an impact on the nation’s legacy,” said Kim Sajet, director of the National Portrait Gallery. 

In addition to the award, the 2022 recipients will receive commissioned portraits by notable contemporary artists, the work being housed in the National Portrait Gallery, which is also home to the presidential portraits. The portraits will be on public display from Nov. 10 through Oct. 22, 2023 as a part of the museum’s “Recent Acquisitions” exhibition. 

Other 2022 honorees include Anthony S. Fauci, chief medical advisor to the president, iconic music executive Clive Davis, and José Andrés, founder of the World Central Kitchen.  

The Portrait of a Nation Gala will be held on Saturday, November 12th at the Smithsonian museum in Washington, D.C. Proceeds from the event will support the Portrait Gallery’s endowment for exhibitions, collections, commissions and education programs. 

Congratulations, to all of the honorees!

Photos Courtesy of Gabriel Goldberg/KK Ottesen/The Washington Post/Damon Winter/The New York Times/Laura Metzler Photography