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Americans Who Tell the Truth

Traveling Exhibition + Workshops

Writers, Journalists and Filmmakers

Americans Who Tell the Truth Traveling Exhibition + Workshops

The exhibit, "Americans Who Tell the Truth," helps us remember the dignity, courage and importance of some of America's truth tellers. Whether or not you agree with a particular subject’s point of view,  the works of art  are intended to create a dialogue that will help each of us figure out which truths we value most as citizens in a democracy. 

Americans Who Tell the Truth is available as a traveling exhibition. It's creator, Rob Shetterfly is also available to give talks separately or in conjunction with exhibits.

A representative listing of past and future exhibition sites include : the Congregational Church of Blue Hill, ME, Bates College (ME), the University of Maine at Farmington, Concordia University (MN),the Bolles School in Jacksonville, FL, Allegheny College (PA), the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High .School (MA), Frankie’s Café in Ellsworth, ME, Augustana College (IL), the Cincinnati Country Day school (OH), the Maine State House, Portland City Hall (ME), Southwest Missouri University, the Miller Art Museum in Sturgeon Bay, WI, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City.

Americans Who Tell the Truth currently includes well more than 100 portraits. Images of most of these can be found on the Portraits section of the website.

To find out more about how to host an exhibit of Truth Teller portraits, contact Bob Sargent.


Information for Potential Hosts of the Truth Tellers

Choosing the Portraits: Shows may include just one portrait or the whole series depending on how much exhibit space is available and what the budget is. For example, the City Hall in Portland, Maine will hang 10 portraits to commemorate Black History Month. While Community Works New York, working with St. John the Divine and the World Financial Center, will host the entire series from May to July, 2005.

Costs: Exhibitors are expected to contribute a reasonable loan fee which helps to keep the project solvent and accessible to as many people as possible. In addition, if an Exhibitor wishes to invite Rob Shetterly to talk at an exhibit they are expected to cover all expenses and offer the artist a modest honorarium. Bob Sargent may be able to assist organizations with fundraising and help them to think of creative ways to cover these expenses.

Space requirements: The portraits measure 30" x 36".  We suggest that exhibit hosts plan on 5 linear feet/portrait to accommodate portrait, an 8"x 10" styrene panel containing biographic information on the subject, and reasonable space between portraits.  We believe it is essential that the portraits hang at eye level.

Shipping: The portraits ship well via UPS in formica-reinforced cardboard crates.  This makes it possible to move the exhibit easily from one place to another in the country in just a few days.

The Truth Tellers Team wants the series to be accessible to any community that demonstrates an interest in showing the portraits and has the energy to make it happen.



Teachers around the country have made use of the portraits in Americans Who Tell the Truth. As such, a teacher’s workshop has been developed to familiarize teachers in a more in-depth manner with the project and allow for a collaborative, integrated and intentional use of the portraits in the school community. Please contact us at with interest in arranging a  workshop experience for your school. References available upon request.



As a result of attending this workshop, participants will:

  • Identify one’s personal experience of truth telling.
  • Become familiar with teaching techniques to increase student awareness of individuals who have shaped our society in the past and who are trying to do so now.
  • Learn of methods to promote civic awareness and increase student consciousness of human situations in our world.
  • Apply the use of biographies to curriculum content areas.
  • Learn of how this program has provided personal growth opportunities for students as well as role models for their lives.



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