The most recent tragedy of Gaza has left the headlines but forever remains in the hearts of the three artists who come together for this exhibition. It is their wish that the Gaza conversation continue through their work and your response to it.
Najat El-Khairy was born of Palestinian origin in 1948, the year that marks the Nakba for Palestinians. Educated in Cairo, Egypt and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, she studied art including oil painting, embroidery, stained glass and pottery. After relocating to Montreal, Canada, she studied painting on porcelain with noted masters in the field and subsequently developed a variety of proprietary painting techniques, using porcelain to preserve the heritage of Palestinian textile design. El-Khairy says of the tiles exhibited here, Since the war on Gaza, I have been suffering and living with our people through every cross-stitch that I painted, preparing for this wonderful exhibition immortalizing the beauty of the Palestinian embroidery on a non-perishable medium is my mission and contribution to our just cause.
Rajie Cook is an internationally known graphic designer, photographer and artist. In 1984, he received the Presidential Award for Design Excellence. In 2003, his firms project, Symbols Signs, was accepted to the collections of the Smithsonian Institution. Inspired in part by the work of Joseph Cornell, Cooks sculptural assemblages have been widely exhibited. The Boxes he has created articulate the circumstances and experiences he encountered in Palestine through his travels with the Task Force for the Middle East, a group sponsored by the Presbyterian Church, USA. I felt it was important for me to create public awarenessto sensitize my audiences that peace with justice is a must in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.
Helen Zughaib was born in Beirut, Lebanon and lived in the Middle East and Europe. She received her BFA from Syracuse University. Her paintings, gouache and ink on board, are included in over 80 public and private collections, including the White House and the Arab American National Museum in Detroit, Michigan. She was recently appointed U.S. Cultural Envoy to the West Bank. The Witness series and three additional pieces showing the resilience of women reflect her determination that people not forget the devastation of Gaza in 2008-09.
A percentage of the artists proceeds will be donated to a Gaza charity of their choice.
Official Website: http://www.americanarabforum.org/Gaza-exhibit-jer-fund.htm
Added by Hawkes on May 28, 2009