Rob Shetterly to Present Brandeis Portrait

May 26, 2009, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Room 175, Brandeis School of Law

Maine artist Rob Shetterly will present his portrait of Louis D. Brandeis, one of Louisville’s most famous natives, on Tuesday, May 26, at 4:00 PM in Room 175 at the Law School.


The Louisville Visual Art Association exhibited Maine artist Rob Shetterly's portraits from his collection of "Americans Who Tell the Truth" at the Water Tower last fall.  These portraits are of Americans whose words and works demonstrate the importance of the First Amendment in American life.  Mr. Shetterly was inspired to paint the first portrait after 9-11, and then continued his work, with more than 130 paintings. 

Laura Rothstein, former dean and now professor at the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law, attended the artist's reception on October 24.  In a conversation with Mr. Shetterly, she suggested that he paint a portrait of Louis Brandeis, one of Louisville's most famous natives.  After learning about the many contributions of Justice Brandeis to important First Amendment and other social justice issues, he had the challenge of selecting a quote from the enormous collection of Brandeis wise words.  His selection is most timely.  It is:

Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher.  Crime is contagious.  If government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for the law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy.

The portrait will be publicly displayed at two events, both on Tuesday, May 26.

The first presentation of the portrait will be at Central High School, at 9:00 am, attended by all of the law and government magnet students.  The Brandeis School of Law has a partnership at Central High School with its Law and Government Magnet program.  Through the partnership the law school students, faculty, and staff, provide a rich array of programs and activities - including presenting a curriculum to the students which includes issues of civil liberties.  One of the activities is the Justice William E. McAnulty Essay Competition.  This year's juniors selected one of the Shetterly portraits for their essay topics.  Joseph Gutmann, well known former prosecutor in Louisville, was also affected by 9-11, and changed his career to teaching.  He is now the law magnet coordinator/teacher at Central High School.  It is his students who are in this program.   Mr. Shetterly, whose works are now the basis of a detailed curriculum for use in schools, will talk with the students about his work and the people in his work.  One of his portraits is Muhammad Ali, a graduate of Central High School. 

The second event, will be the Brandeis School of Law, at 4:00 pm.  Members of the public are invited. Special guests will include local members of the Brandeis family and others in the university and local and legal communities who share an appreciation for the work and contributions of Justice Brandeis.  Again, after unveiling the portrait, Mr. Shetterly will give remarks about his work and what he learned about Justice Brandeis.

Support for the presentation was provided by Owsley and Christy Brown.