Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The "I Am Afghanistan" Exhibition at Rogue Space | Chelsea

The "I Am Afghanistan" Exhibition at Rogue Space | Chelsea

Opening Reception: Thursday Oct. 3.
Exhibition runs: Oct. 4,5,6, 12-6pm.

NEW YORK, SEPT 12: Children from one of the most persecuted ethnic groups in Afghanistan will exhibit their artworks for the first time Oct. 3-6 at Rogue Space | Chelsea in New York.

The children are Hazara, an ancient clan with historic ties to the Mongolian empire of Genghis Khan, who are now fighting for survival amid the current turmoil of their homeland. For many Hazara children--especially girls--attending school is an impossible dream.

The exhibit at Rogue Space | Chelsea is being organized by Kevin O'Hanlon, a New York-based documentary filmmaker who first visited Kabul last November to deliver art supplies to the children studying at Le Pelican Center, an institution started in 2003 that now provides basic education, recreation, a hot daily meal and vocational training for over 350 children.  All proceeds of the show will be returned to Le Pelican to help further the children's creative education.


The Hazara people have a storied history as descendants of Genghis Khan's 1,000 soldiers from the time of the Mongol Empire. The name of their clan, Hazara, means "1,000" in Persian.  They are the third largest ethnic group in Afghanistan and have historically been persecuted, most brutally by the Taliban.

The paintings largely express a wistful and idyllic feeling of "home" with landscapes dotted by trees, rivers, mountains and sunshine.  The Hazara hail from the mountainous regions of Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan. Many have been displaced from their homes and farms amid fighting and have settled in communities of western Kabul.  Mr. O'Hanlon says the artworks they have created for the show depict the lands and homes they were forced to leave behind. Other paintings conjure new homes they wish they could inhabit someday.

Rogue Foundation's mission is to empower children in conflict zones around the world by giving them the tools and encouragement to create art and, by extension, to seek creative solutions to their challenges.  Previous projects took art supplies and teachers to work with children in Haiti after the 2011 earthquake and with children living in homeless shelters in New York.  Current projects are being planned for Egypt, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Syria.  Created by Mr. O'Hanlon, Rogue Foundation is supported by shows at Rogue Space | Chelsea, a gallery in the heart of New York's Chelsea gallery district.

Exhibition location and opening hours:
Rogue Space | Chelsea
508 West 26th Street, 9th Floor
+1 212-751-2210

Opening reception: Thursday, Oct. 3, 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Show runs Oct. 4-612 noon-6 p.m.

Follow Le Pelican's story at and on Facebook

For further information please contact:
Kevin O'Hanlon
+1 212-751-2210
Rogue Documentary Projects

Drawing Hope is a new documentary series from documentary filmmaker Kevin OHanlon focusing on creativity as a positive response in some of the world's most challenging environments. Directed by filmmaker Kevin O'Hanlon, the series introduces us to political climates around the world through the daily personal experience of a selected creative. Each episode reveals their creative inclinations and processes and how they are shaped by the conflict they witness. Creative resilience is constantly reinforced as a message that hope endures.The series intends to illuminate the politics of conflict from a grassroots, personal perspective and cultivate an awareness that in the midst of great upheaval and challenge there is also a constant stream of creative innovation which empowers us and future generations.Upcoming projects take place in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Burma, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.


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