Monday, April 6, 2009

FUSE: Refugee Photographic Exhibit opens April 16

We had our usual Historical League meeting today and Dr Welsh gave us a a special sneak preview into this exhibit. Eliza Gregory has an amazing eye when it comes to photography - Great insight into the lives of refugees. Their background can be heard if you use your cell phone and dial the number. It's a great way to have "sight and sound".
Newswire/ -- FUSE: Portraits of Refugee Households in
Metropolitan Phoenix opens at the Arizona Historical Society Museum at Papago
Park on April 16. This "sight and sound" exhibit runs through July 19. It
features 30 large photographic portraits by Eliza Gregory of refugee families
from Liberia, Hungary, Bosnia, Burundi, Burma, Sudan, Congo and Somalia. Many
photographs are accompanied by an audio "portrait" where refugee families
describe their lives and experiences. The audio portraits were produced by
Rose Love Chou.

Metropolitan Phoenix is a major refugee resettlement area. Approximately
44,000 refugees have come to Phoenix since 1980 and the city's refugee
population grows by more than 2,000 new arrivals each year. "This is an
important exhibition for us and for Arizona because it shows how the world has
changed. Arizona has always been a place for people to come and find new
lives. Today, people are coming from Africa, Southeast Asia, Central Europe.
At the Arizona Historical Society Museum, it is our purpose to document and
discuss recent history that affects us all," said Peter Welsh, Executive
Director, Arizona Historical Society Museum at Papago Park.

The exhibit is produced in association with COAR, Community Outreach and
Advocacy for Refugees, a program that works with resettled refugees to help
them rebuild their lives. The program was founded in 2002 by Sambo Dul, who
was a Cambodian refugee and an undergraduate at Arizona State University. "I
was five years old when my family made the 8,000 mile journey from the refugee
camp on the Thai-Cambodian border to Phoenix, Arizona. Upon arrival, we
struggled to adjust to a new life in a strange land," said Dul who is
currently a law student at New York University.

FUSE will be on exhibit at the Museum through July 19, 2009. "This project is
born of a curiosity about people," said photographer Eliza Gregory. "I wanted
to meet resettled refugees in Phoenix; and learn about who they are, where
they come from, and what life is like for them now."

The Arizona Historical Society Museum at Papago Park is located at 1300 N.
College Avenue, Tempe. It is open Tuesday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. and
Sunday from 12 p.m. - 4 p.m. This exhibit has been made possible, in part, by
the Historical League, Inc. and the Central Chapter of the Arizona Historical