JAN 18–MAR 12, 2017
ELENA DORFMAN: SYRIA’S LOST GENERATION
Through portraiture and audio recordings, Elena Dorfman (1965- ) offers a humanistic perspective to the Syrian conflict, a global crisis that has claimed more than 470,000 lives and driven 6.5 million people from their homes.
On assignment with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in 2013, Dorfman documented exiled Syrians in Egypt, Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon. Syria’s Lost Generation documents a small fraction of a population disproportionately affected by the war: teenagers. Dorfman was drawn most strongly to Syrian youth, explaining, “They seemed particularly shell-shocked and bereft . . . they spoke to me of powerful longing and frustration.” Suffering physical and psychological ills, facing uncertain futures, and fearful of retaliation, the individuals appearing in these works presented themselves to Dorfman with the hope their stories would be told.
The ten-month project built on her previous work as a documentarian—in particular, The C-Word (1998), a photographic series of teenagers living with cancer—and her background as a portraiture photographer for publications such as The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Time, and Fortune.
Since graduating from Sarah Lawrence College in 1988, Elena Dorfman has specialized in documenting extreme circumstances and unusual subjects. She has exhibited her work at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Cincinnati Art Museum, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Museum of Modern Art. Dorfman lives and works in Los Angeles, California.This exhibition is organized by the Newcomb Art Museum of Tulane with funding from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.