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Emanuel Hahn

Rose of Sharon, 2023

Rose of Sharon, 2023

Regular price $1,700.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $1,700.00 USD
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Rose of Sharon, 2023
24 x 18 inches
Archival pigment print on Canson Rag Photographique paper
Edition of 10
Signed and numbered by the artist 

Emanuel Hahn (he/him) is a Los Angeles-based photographer/director interested in topics of identity, culture, diasporic experiences and the question of what it means "to belong". His work America Fever is an ongoing staged narrative photo series that intersects Korean cultural and historical elements with mythologies of the American West in an exploration of Korean American immigrant experiences in the 1970s. The title refers to citizens in postwar Korea who, inspired by the image of American culture, desired to immigrate to the US for a better life. These staged scenes reflect the luster and romance of an American West coming out of the Hollywood age.

Hahn’s work explores themes of cultural identity and the immigrant experience in the United States. He draws on history, archival photography, Western and Korean art, and personal memories to construct scenes that show different facets of the immigrant experience. He is interested in challenging simplistic notions of the American immigrant process - whether it's the model minority myth, or the bootstrap model - and also complicating the seemingly linear idea of assimilation.

The national flower of South Korea - 무궁화 ‘mugunghwa’ - is renowned for its beauty and resilience. It is also known as the Rose of Sharon, which in Biblical allusions point to its ability to bloom in the wilderness. In this photograph, the figure rising from the hibiscus references the Birth of Venus, symbolizing the arrival of Korean immigrants into a harsh land to begin their new life. The modernized hanbok indicates a desire to transform while holding onto the vestiges of tradition, while the bottari (bundle of items) indicate the weight of the past that has to be brought into this new world.

Hahn notes, “I align with For Freedom's mission of using art to educate and challenge our understanding of our country's history. I want people to dig deeper into the stories of minorities and the historically oppressed in the United States, to understand the systemic forces that hinder their progress. Finally, I hope that through the sharing of art, people feel empowered to adjust their attitudes and behaviors to effect positive societal change.”

For Freedoms is excited to support our fellows through sales and community-building opportunities; artists will receive 50% of the net proceeds of sales of their artwork. 


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