Inter Vivos: Margaret Adams, Gabriela Bulisova, and Muriel Hasbun

Artists Panel Discussion: November 6, 12-1:30 p.m. 

Opening Reception: November 6, 6 p.m.

Gallery 31 and The Corcoran College of Art + Design are pleased to present Inter Vivos, an installation of photographs, objects, and sound art by Margaret Adams, Gabriela Bulisova, and Muriel Hasbun, curated by Michael Paris Mazzeo.

According to Harvard psychologist, Steven Pinker, we live in the most peaceful time in human history. But though war-related death as a percentage of population has declined over the ages, the constant and immediate stream of global crises delivered by the media suggests otherwise. It seems that we are now, more than ever, painfully aware of the extent of human suffering that exists throughout the world due to unnecessary acts of aggression. In this intimate exhibition, the artists reflect on their personal experiences of war, and together create an archive of documentation, offering a meditation on war, a remembrance of lives lost, and an invocation of a more peaceful future.

Margaret Adams awakens the collective conscious with a profound installation of images and objects associated with the U.S. conflict in Vietnam and the World Trade Center bombings. Precipice, an installation of undeveloped film rolls and inkjet prints derived from Polaroids, employs the archives of the artist and her father, both of them protagonists and witnesses to the historic events.  

In her piece, The Option of Last Resort: Iraqi Refugees in the United States, Gabriela Bulisova documents persons who have been displaced and disenfranchised as a result of war. Her collection of photographs reflects images of Iraqis who worked with Americans during the U.S. invasion of Iraq and are now fugitives living in constant fear of retribution by their former compatriots. They share their deeply moving stories of loss and survival in clandestine interviews and enigmatic photographs that provide deeply intimate details without ever completely revealing their true identities. 

As if unearthed from another era, Muriel Hasbun’s hauntingly beautiful images are a paean to the anonymous victims of conflict and suffering. The assemblage of images, painstakingly selected from her father’s archive of thousands of dental x-rays, embodies the collective memory of a tragic era in the history of her home country, El Salvador. Her work, X post facto (équis anónimo), is a collection of photographs that acts as a reliquary of organic remains that transcends all borders.

Gabriela Bulisova, Untitled, from the series Option of Last Resort: Iraqi Refugees in the United States, 2008-2010. Archival pigment print.