My Lai Memorial Exhibit featured at Hairpin Arts in Chicago June 6-9

Speakers & Presentations

Thursday June 6th

6:30p Opening Reception with guest speaker Kathy Kelly, Member Chicago Veterans for Peace and Co-coordinator Voices for Creative Nonviolence.

“Remembering My Lai in a Permanent Warfare State”

Kathy will share current projects of Voices for Creative Nonviolence which has deep, long-standing roots in active nonviolent resistance to U.S. war-making.

7:30p “Their Voices, Our Voices” Performance Art by Poet’s- Eye Artist’s Voice

An original piece of images and text readings that respond to the My Lai Memorial Exhibit. The piece will incorporate graphics and writings from the exhibit as well as visitors’ reflections and the artists’ own impressions.

8:00p Gallery Chat and Q&A with Mac MacDevitt, creator of the My Lai Memorial Exhibit

Friday, June 7th

4:00p – 7:00p “Our Bodies Know More Than We Can Tell – Reflections on War, Trauma and Resistance” – Participatory Performance Sessions with Artist Joseph Lefthand

7:30p Chicago Screening Premier of the documentary “The Whistleblower of My Lai”

Director: Connie Field, Producer: Connie Field and Gregory Scharpen. www.clarityfilms.org

This  film is a unique fusion of opera and documentary. It examines Army helicopter pilot Hugh Thompson’s discovery and subsequent exposure of the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

Saturday, June 8th

1:00p – 4:00p “Our Bodies Know More Than We Can Tell – Reflections on War, Trauma and Resistance” – Participatory Performance Sessions with Artist Joseph Lefthand

4:00p “Political Prints and Graphics” – Gallery Talk with Aaron Hughes and Barry Romo

Explore the use political art and print graphics to expose injustices and call for action with Chicago-based Aaron Hughes, an artist, activist, organizer, teacher, and Iraq War veteran.

7:30p “No Human Being Should Ever Have to Do This” Live Storytelling by Dennis Stout.

Dennis shares stories of the men in his Army unit; both the challenges they endured on long-range patrols and the suffering they caused to Vietnamese civilians when they moved up a valley with orders to “kill anything that moves”. Dennis was the first infantryman in Vietnam to report members of his unit for war crimes.

Sunday, June 9th

2:00p “A Compassionate Response to a Violent World” Workshop with Burrell Poe

We will come together to practice compassion with each other and learn about 3 components of compassion: Loving kindness, Self-compassion, and common humanity. We will do activities and practice skills related to these principles with one another. After the workshop we will walk through the exhibit.

4:00p Gallery Chat and Q&A with Mac MacDevitt creator of the My Lai Memorial Exhibit.

5:30p Closing Circle

ENDLESS WAR: Memory, Trauma and Resistance

A counter-narrative to our current aggressive militarism

Featuring:

My Lai Memorial Exhibit By Chicago Veterans for Peace
“Posters of Trauma and Resistance” By Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative, Iraq Veterans Against the War and American Friends Service Committee
AHMED – Video Installation By Aaron Hughes

CHICAGO, IL- The Hairpin Arts Center hosts a four-day event celebrating the powerful impact of art and activism in a world torn by war and violence featuring visual and performance art, workshops, veteran storytelling, interactive art projects, and voices calling for action and resistance. June 6th through June 9th.

The event features My Lai Memorial Exhibit by Chicago Veterans for Peace which depicts the 1968 brutal massacre by U.S soldiers of more than 500 Vietnamese in their home village as a lens to confront the horror of war for those civilians caught on the other side of American firepower both in Vietnam and in our endless wars in the past 50 years, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

To counter the Pentagon and our political system’s constant stream of messages calling for aggressive militarism globally and in our own communities, the event also features “Posters of War and Resistance”. The art works powerfully expose to the trauma of war from the viewpoint of returning veterans and community activists, inspire resistance and speak for peace and social justice.

ENDLESS WAR invites us to face the painful impact of our political and military actions and become actively engaged in changing ourselves, our communities and our world to create a more tolerant, just and peaceful society that celebrates our common humanity and rejects violence and war.

Location: Hairpin Arts Center, 2810 N. Milwaukee
Free Admission; some programming offers suggested donation

PROGRAMING DETAILS:

Thursday, June 6th

6:30p Opening Reception with guest speaker Kathy Kelly

7:30p Performance Art by Poet’s Eye, Artist’s Voice

8:00p Gallery Chat and Q&A with Mac MacDevitt

Friday, June 7th

4:00p – 7:00p Participatory Performance Sessions with Joseph Lefthand

7:30p Chicago Screening Premiere of The Whistleblower of My Lai – Director: Connie Field, Producer: Connie Field and Gregory Scharpen. www.clarityfilms.org

Saturday, June 8th

1:00p – 4:00p Participatory Performance Sessions with Joseph Lefthand

2:00p Woodard Plaza’s Songs for Peace

4:00p Gallery Talk with Aaron Hughes and Barry Romo

7:30p Live Storytelling with Army Vietnam veteran Dennis Stout

Sunday, June 9th 2:00p

2:00p “Compassionate Response in a Violent World” Workshop with Burrell Poe

4:00p Gallery Chat and Q&A with Mac MacDevitt

5:30p Closing Circle

In addition to programming, the exhibit features the My Lai Memorial Exhibit (Chicago Veterans for Peace), War is Trauma and Inaugurating Resistance Portfolios (Iraq Veterans Against the War and Just Seeds Artist’s Cooperative), Posters from the Chicago Peace Building Program (American Friends Service Committee), Veterans Art, video installation (Aaron Hughes), personal sculptural collage building, a storybooth, and calls to action.

 

My Lai Memorial Exhibit

The My Lai Memorial Exhibit honors the Vietnamese who died in our American War. The exhibit panels on the Vietnam War and the My Lai Massacre examine the tragic impact of our political and military actions on the people of Vietnam. The Memorial Exhibit explores how our governmental and military policies and practices developed, nurtured, implemented and then covered-up a campaign that led to the killing of two million Vietnamese civilians during the course of the war; a campaign that allowed and encouraged the atrocity at My Lai and other mass killings on the ground and from the air with bombs and artillery shells.

The My Lai Memorial Exhibit has traveled to 13 cities – from the West Coast, through the Midwest and from Florida to Maine.

“The power and intensity of this exhibit is so valuable. Thank you for bringing voice to those lost in this atrocity. I am grateful to be able to share the burden of such immeasurable sadness of Vietnam. I hope I may lighten their load by continuing to spread awareness and fight for justice.”

“I am totally amazed by this exhibit which tells truths that must be spoken, clearly and often. What I find most appalling is how the U.S. is doing the same thing in Iraq and Afghanistan; and how we aid those in Yemen and Syria, and how it is the civilians who suffer disproportionately.”

“Posters of Trauma and Resistance”

A selection of posters that speak to the trauma of war from the viewpoint of returning veterans and community activists, inspire resistance and speak for peace and social justice. Posters from Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative and Iraq Veterans Against the War including “War is Trauma”, Celebrate People’s History – Iraq Veterans Against the War”, and “Inaugurating Resistance” Portfolios. Also included are posters from the Chicago Peace Building Program of the American Friends Service Committee.

“AHMED: A selection of Ahmed Jabar Shareef’s photographs” by Aaron Hughes

This powerful video is based on photos taken by Ahmed Jabar Shareef, a nine year old Iraqi boy who came to New York to receive medical assistance in 2006 thanks to the generous support of Global Medical Relief Fund. Aaron Hughes is an artist, activist, organizer, teacher, and Iraq War veteran based in Chicago.
The Hairpin Arts Center is a place where art and activism meet.