PROFILES IN PORTRAITURE
By John Seibels Walker
It was quite an honor to be the artist chosen to paint the official portrait of Ohio Governor John Kasich. The Ohio Statehouse displays an impressive collection of portraits honoring its governors and it was my goal to create a unique addition to that collection.
The Ohio Holocaust and Liberators Memorial next to the Ohio Statehouse was chosen by the Governor as the setting for his portrait:
This location is of special significance to Governor Kasich. In 2011, he proposed a memorial to remember Ohio Holocaust survivors and Ohio World War II veterans. The memorial was completed and officially unveiled in 2014, serving to speak for the millions of voices the Holocaust silenced while thanking the brave men and women of Ohio who liberated the oppressed and fought for human freedom.
On the final day of autumn in 2018, with fallen leaves scattered throughout the memorial further symbolizing all of those who were lost, we specifically positioned the Governor in front of a stone wall inscribed with the following sentiment:
“INSPIRED BY THE OHIO SOLDIERS WHO WERE PART OF THE AMERICAN LIBERATION AND SURVIVORS WHO MADE OHIO THEIR HOME
IF YOU SAVE ONE LIFE, IT IS AS IF YOU SAVED THE WORLD”.
A fitting statement of courage, strength and compassion for such a widely respected American statesman to have as part of his legacy in paint.
The portrait is life-size, oil on linen, and measures 62 x 40 inches.
It is part of the permanent collection of art displayed at the Ohio Statehouse.