By Ragen Mendenhall
From an unusual vantage point, the distress of the despondent veteran standing in front of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall is evident, as he leans on his crutches, a hand partially covering his downcast face. The hope and uplifting assurance of the Guardian Angel that supports the soldier is depicted in the beautiful portrait of her face.
This piece won second place at the national 1995 Congressional Art Competition and was designated to hang in the office of Rep. John Ensign, R-Nev., in Washington, D.C. At the Congressional Awards Ceremony, Ensign not only expressed extreme pleasure in having her picture hang in his office but made a point to express his personal feelings. Ensign recalled his visit to the wall just prior to the contest. "It literally felt like angels were surrounding the place," he said. "When I first saw this drawing ... I just couldn't believe it."
He was even more surprised to learn that Ragen had never been there.
Although no one is buried at the memorial, it is hallowed ground. Everyone who visits is emotionally affected, and Ragen was able to capture that intense emotion while synchronously reminding the viewer of the strength and support lovingly given by otherworldly beings. Not only are the soldier and angel guardians, so are the gifts left at the base of the wall.
Pencil drawing, 16" x 18". Collector quality, limited edition, signed and numbered. Contact the artist at the email link above for information on how to obtain a copy of this print