Woodrow Wilson House Presents Helen Zughaib: Migrations

By Editorial Team on May 20, 2019
Syrian Migration Series #14, 2016, archival pigment print, 1/20, courtesy of the artist.
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Artist’s Talk & Opening Reception: June 7 at 6pm

Join Artist Helen Zughaib and the Woodrow Wilson House’s Senior Manager of Interpretation and Collections Asantewa Boakyewa, for a tour of Helen Zughaib: Migrations on view May 23 – July 28, 2019.

The Treaty of Versailles that ended World War I resulted in the creation of modern borders in the Middle East that have lasting effects on today’s geopolitics. Zughaib’s Syrian Migration Series seeks to refocus attention on the modern Syrian crisis and give voice to those affected, particularly the experience of women and children migrants and refugees. The series is an interpretation of Jacob Lawrence’s 1941 seminal Migration Series depicting the mass movement of African Americans from the Southern United States to points north and west.  Known as The Great Migration, this defining period in American history is ignited during President Wilson’s first term by the start of WWI and the demand for labor in urban centers and amplified by the political, social, and economic repression of African Americans in the South. The intersectionality of the Great Migration and the present-day Syrian migration reframes these domestic movements within a global context. The presentation of Zughaib’s work against the backdrop of the Woodrow Wilson House provokes a reexamination of Wilson’s international legacy in the contemporary sphere.

About the Artist

Helen Zughaib was born in Beirut, Lebanon, and holds a BFA from Syracuse University. Her work has been exhibited widely in the US, Europe, and Lebanon. Her paintings are included in many private and public collections, including the White House, World Bank, Library of Congress, US Consulate General, Vancouver, Canada, American Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, the Arab American National Museum in Michigan, and the DC Art Bank collection.  Zughaib’s paintings have been gifted to heads of state by President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.  She currently lives in Washington, DC, and works fulltime as an artist.

The President Woodrow Wilson House, 2340 S Street NW. Metro: Dupont Circle (Q Street exit).  More online at www.woodrowwilsonhouse.org/helen-zughaib-migrations