This large-group exhibition brings together Veteran self-portraits from the Arts and Culture Commission of Contra Costa County’s ABOUTFACE program. Over 100 self-portraits will be presented, for the first time bringing together the numerous ABOUTFACE works created over multiple years of the program. Collectively the pieces form a ‘unit’ that represents the varied stories of Veterans transitioning from military to civilian life.
About the program: In 2015 the Arts and Culture Commission and the Physical Rehabilitation Service at Veterans Affairs Health Care in Martinez developed ABOUTFACE to improve the lives of California’s Veterans through arts programming. Based on the belief that individuals have the capacity to heal themselves, ABOUTFACE engages Veterans through painting workshops focused on artistic skill development and self-expression. The two-day workshops are team-taught by a teaching artist and a qualified therapist, with a Veteran coordinator present. Workshop activities include meditation, peer discussion, sketching each other and painting a final self-portrait.
Image: Dennis A. Giacovelli, Untitled (Self-Portrait), 2018. Second Class (E5) Engineman: Navy 1969- 71, Vietnam 1970.