Wyoming Arts Council

NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman: Ray Bradbury inspired generations of readers and writers

NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman’s statement on the death of National Medal of Arts recipient Ray Bradbury:

“On behalf of the National Endowment for the Arts, it is with great sadness that I acknowledge the passing of Ray Bradbury, recipient of the National Medal of Arts and one of the inaugural authors featured in our Big Read program. With his boundless imagination and creativity, Bradbury inspired not just generations of readers but generations of writers. His infectious sense of humor, boundless enthusiasm for both scientific and literary exploration, and unmatched inventiveness will be sorely missed.”

Ray Bradbury was one of the greatest American writers of the 20th and 21st centuries. His singular achievement is rooted in the imaginative originality of his works, his gift for language, his insights into the human condition, and his commitment to the freedom of the individual. A passionate advocate for libraries, Bradbury never tired of telling how he wrote Fahrenheit 451 on the typewriters at the UCLA’s Lawrence Clark Powell Library “with a bagful of dimes.” Speaking of the novel in an interview several years ago, Bradbury said: “I’ve said it often: I’ve tried not to predict, but to protect and to prevent…. I can teach people to really know they’re alive.”

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