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About CFA

The Commission of Fine Arts is an independent federal agency charged with giving expert advice to the President, the Congress and the federal and District of Columbia governments on matters of design and aesthetics, as they affect the federal interest and preserve the dignity of the nation’s capital. The Commission is composed of seven presidentially appointed experts in relevant disciplines including art, architecture, landscape architecture, and urban design.

The Commission reviews designs proposed for memorials, coins, medals, and new or renovated government buildings, as well as privately owned properties in certain areas of Washington under the Shipstead-Luce and Old Georgetown Acts. In addition, the Commission supports a variety of arts institutions in Washington, DC, through the National Capital Arts and Cultural Affairs (NCACA) program.

Through its unique work as the only federal commission dedicated to design review and aesthetic excellence, the Commission of Fine Arts serves the American people, international visitors, and those who live and work in the nation’s capital, contributing to the beauty and dignity of this international symbol of American democracy.

About Us

The Commission of Fine Arts seal was designed by sculptor and CFA member Lee Lawrie for the fortieth anniversary of the agency in 1950. The seal is still used as the commission’s logo. (Image credit: CFA)