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Is a veterans art show on the way?

Thursday, July 20, 2017 by Lisa Dreher

A local group is trying to organize an arts festival that showcases the work of veterans. Glenn Towery, chair and founder of the Veterans Suicide Prevention Channel, presented the idea to the Arts Commission during its regular meeting Monday night. Towery, a Vietnam War veteran, founded the channel that creates videos to provide psychiatric help and guidance for veterans facing post-traumatic stress. Towery said a city veterans’ art festival could have different art museums participate, with different themes, as well as a vendor walk where veterans may sell their artwork. When Commissioner Bruce Willenzik asked Towery about the festival’s location and date, Towery responded that he did not have an exact answer except for having the festival possibly spread across different art museums in Austin. Towery said he hopes to make a festival that is famous nationwide and would be specific to Austin. “It is something that can bring a lot of wellness to veterans; art has already been proven (to be) great therapy,” Towery said. “It is also something that will allow veterans to express to the world their feelings about having served, and allow the world to come in and see the art.” Commissioner Brett Barnes suggested Towery collaborate with other art groups that work with veterans to build more concrete plans.

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