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"Adam Straus: Small Memorials for a Great Loss"
2007-02-06 until 2007-03-10
Nohra Haime Gallery
New York, NY,
USA United States of America
Nohra Haime Gallery will present an exhibition of small memorials to soldiers lost in Iraq by Adam Straus from February 6 through March 10, 2007.
Inspired by his role as a parent to his three-year-old son, Adam Straus created Small Memorials for a Great Loss to put faces on the consequences of the war in Iraq. Miles away from the destruction, we tend to be detached from the painful reality of war. Through each individual memorial or “little poem of loss,” as he refers to them, Straus brings us into the homes of those families who are directly experiencing brutal tragedy.
“The work is a response to war rhetoric that does not focus on the fact that people are dying,” Straus notes. As a father, he empathizes for those thousands of parents who have experienced what he considers to be the greatest sorrow -- the loss of a child.
Elements of Straus’s earlier work such as candles appear in these powerful images, where he combines different techniques and media. Photographs of actual soldiers who have been killed were enlarged to acquire a grainy, almost antique quality, giving a universal and timeless feeling: the impression that these faces could be of soldiers from any war in the last century. The enlarged photograph is then transferred onto wood or lead, a material often used by Straus. In this case, its relevance to the subject can be traced through the study of alchemy, in which lead represents sadness and mourning, among other dark feelings. Aesthetically, the use of lead darkens the image thus creating a somber tone.
Small Memorials for a Great Loss is Straus' answer to an inner call of urgency not to remain silent about the war. A portion of the proceeds from the exhibition will be donated to a disabled veterans organization.
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