News Releases

“Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012” Opens at the National Air and Space Museum

January 11, 2012

The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum will present “Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012,” an exhibition consisting of 91 works of art selected from the Marine Corps Art Program. Originally established as the Marine Corps Combat Art Program in 1942 to “keep Americans informed about what ‘their Marines’ were doing at home and overseas,” the collection now consists of more than 8,000 works and is managed by the National Museum of the Marine Corps, which partnered with the National Air and Space Museum to produce the exhibition. The year-long exhibition, which coincides with the national observance of the centennial, opens Jan. 14.

The works on display range from art for recruitment posters to works by master aviation artists R.G. Smith and Keith Ferris, who painted the mural “Fortresses Under Fire” that serves as a backdrop for the museum’s World War II gallery, as well as Robert McCall, better known for his aerospace art and his murals at the entrance of the museum. Subject matter includes important historical moments, portraits of key figures and combat scenes—many painted by participants who witnessed the events. John Glenn, one of the best-known marine aviators, is featured in two portraits—a canvas by Bruce Stevenson that shows him as a young Mercury astronaut and a watercolor by Henry Casselli of him as part of the STS-95 crew—as well as a bronze bust from 1968 by Felix W. De Weldon, the sculptor who created the Iwo Jima Memorial.

The exhibition traces the history of Marine Corps aviation from its origins, starting with the poster art for “Fly with the U.S. Marines” (1920) by leading American artist and illustrator Howard Chandler Christy and a depiction of the first Marine aviator, Lt. Alfred A. Cunningham, flying a Wright B-1 float plane in 1912 by Col. Horace Avery Chenoweth, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. It includes scenes of combat from World War I up to the conflict in Afghanistan, as well as objects from the collections of both museums that provide human and historical context, such as uniforms, squadron patches and flight suits.

The National Air and Space Museum building on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is located at Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W. The museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is located in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport. Both facilities are open daily from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25). Admission is free, but there is a $15 fee for parking at the Udvar-Hazy Center.

# # #

SI-9-2012

 

Media only
Isabel Lara
(202) 633-2374

Brian Mullen
(202) 633-2376

Related photos: 

Air Lift in Fly Marines!

Artist: Col Donna J. Neary, USMCR

"Air Lift" by Col. Donna J. Neary, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Image Number: WEB12199-2011

Related photos: 

Air Scouts Out in Fly Marines!

Artist: Lt. Col. Albert Michael Leahy, USMCR

"Air Scouts Out" by Lt. Col. Albert Michael Leahy, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Related photos: 

Aviator’s Debriefing in Fly Marines!

Artist: Maj. Alex Raymond, USMCR

"Aviator’s Debriefing" by Maj. Alex Raymond, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Related photos: 

Carrier Bound in Fly Marines!

Artist: Col. Peter Michael Gish, USMCR

"Carrier Bound" by Col. Peter Michael Gish, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Related photos: 

Fly with the US Marines in Fly Marines!

Artist: Howard Chandler Christy

"Fly with the US Marines" by Howard Chandler Christy from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

 

Related photos: 

Gunner in Fly Marines!

Artist: Sgt. Richard Yaco, USMC

"Gunner" by Sgt. Richard Yaco, USMC, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Image Number: WEB12205-2011

Related photos: 

Harriers, a Pair in Fly Marines!

Artist: Capt. Leonard H. Dermott, USMCR

"Harriers, a Pair" by Capt. Leonard H. Dermott, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Related photos: 

Helo Relief in Fly Marines!

Artist: Col. Peter Michael Gish, USMCR

"Helo Relief" by Col. Peter Michael Gish, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Related photos: 

Loop of Seaplane, 1917 in Fly Marines!

Artist: Lt. Col. Joseph J. Capolino, USMCR

"Loop of Seaplane, 1917" by Lt. Col. Joseph J. Capolino, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Related photos: 

Wonder Arches, Nam Phong, Thailand in Fly Marines!

Artist: Maj. John T. Dyer, USMCR

"Wonder Arches, Nam Phong, Thailand" by Maj. John T. Dyer, USMCR, from the exhibition "Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012," which tells the story of U.S. Marine Corps aviation over the past 100 years, is on display Jan. 14 through Jan. 6, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.



DCSIMG