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EyeLevel: A Look at Professor Muriel Hasbun’s Photography

Corcoran College of Art + Design, Chair of Photography Muriel Hasbun- Gallery 31

Congratulations to Muriel Hasbun, Corcoran College professor

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and Chair of Photography, whose work is currently being featured on the Smithsonian Institution’s EyeLevel blog.

Hasbun’s personal history and artistic development speaks to a larger Salvadoran experience of migration and endurance in the midst of adversity.

Ester IV

¿Sólo una sombra?/ Only a Shadow? (Ester IV), gelatin silver print, 18″ x 13″ (46 x 33.5 cms.) 1993-94.

From the blog:

“Hasbun’s photography was inspired by her mentor Ray Metzker’s inventive approach to the everyday. She often uses multiple exposures and layered imagery to re-imagine personally meaningful icons. Early series such as Santos y sombras /Saints and Shadows used such strategies to consider her unique family’s history. Hasbun is the child of Jewish and Palestinian parents who met in El Salvador. In her desire to understand her ancestral history, Hasbun turned to existing family photographs and documents to reconstruct their life stories and understand their reasons for migrating. In My Great Grandfather’s Altar, she captures an image of her great-grandfather in front a private domestic altarpiece he built in El Salvador in homage to his Greek Orthodox faith. Hasbun arranged various visual fragments in manner that generates a kaleidoscopic repetition of religious motifs: crosses, votive candles, and prayer books. Other works from the series explore her mother’s family, Polish Jews who lived in France and survived the Nazi occupation in hiding, often in Catholic convents. Throughout the series, Hasbun acknowledges the role of the Catholic Church as a spiritual refuge throughout her family’s history.”

 

Here’s a look at few of Hasbun’s additional works:

Volcán de Izalco, amén/Izalco Volcano, amen

Todos los santos (Volcán de Izalco, amén) / All the Saints (Izalco Volcano, Amen), painted gelatin silver print, 14″ x 18″ (35 x 46 cms.) 1995-96; 28″ x 38″, 2004.

Todos los santos VII

Todos los santos VII/ All the Saints VII, selenium/polytoner gelatin silver print, 12.5″ x 6.5″ (31.5 x 16 cms.) 1995-96.

Corcoran College of Art + Design, Chair of Photography Muriel Hasbun- Gallery 31

X post facto (1.13), archival pigment print, 2009/2013.

Hasbun’s work is currently on view at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in A Democracy of Images, and in the upcoming exhibition, Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art, which opens to the public on October 25, 2013. Hasbun’s work will also be shown in Gallery 31 at the Corcoran gallery of Art from October 30 through November 17 as part of a three person exhibition entitled Inter Vivos: Margaret Adams, Gabriela Bulisova, Muriel Hasbun.