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American graffiti – New Orleans’ Feelings on Hurricane Katrina

Posted by on Sep 01, 2010 | Leave a Comment

Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans with a 28-foot storm surge and 2 feet of rainfall, five years ago which killed more than 1,800 people in the region and caused some $125 billion in damage. There was devastation in every direction and there were vast areas of New Orleans. The smell of death permeated the air in some areas. There was garbage everywhere; timber, furniture, appliances. To communicate with the rest of the world the people were using spray-paint on homes, cars and trees. On Sunday, the southern U.S. state of Louisiana observed the 5th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. To pay honor to its reconstruction President Barack Obama visited New Orleans. The New Orleans Museum of Art also hosts a weekend of events in tribute of the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, which is free and open to the public.

Richard Misrach, American photographer premiere an exhibition in NOMA’s first floor Bay Gallery. Until October 24, 2010, the exhibition will be on display. Misrach also hosted a public lecture on his exhibition on Sunday August 29. He will be signing his catalogues in the Museum Shop After the event. 69 photographs of Misrach focus on the graffiti left by New Orleans evacuees, illuminating a variety of individual reactions and giving a human face to the wreckage. Among them are: “Don’t Try – I am sleeping inside with a big dog, an ugly woman and two shotguns …” “Hey Katrina!! That’s all you got? We will be back!!” and “Destroy this memory.” With a 4 MP pocket camera he shot the photographs between October and December 2005. The museum like The National Gallery of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts and Houston and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art are also exhibiting Misrach’s Katrina photographs.

President Obama recognized as much this past weekend in a speech at Xavier University of Louisiana in New Orleans. He paid honor to all who have toiled to reconstruct the city and pledged continued federal support until the work is done. President Obama said “It was a natural disaster, but also a man-made catastrophe – shameful breakdown in government that left countless men and women and children abandoned and alone.” He also said, “Because of you, New Orleans is coming back. Five years ago, many questioned whether people could ever return to this city. Today, New Orleans is one of the fastest-growing cities in America, with a big surge in small businesses.”

Artist John Doherty created A Hurricane Memorial sculpture, “Fleur de Triomphe.” It will stand next to the city’s 9/11 Memorial in an area now recognized as the park’s Memorial Plaza. On 27 August the devotion ceremony takes place with comments by Mayor Freddy Drennan, a prayer and moment of silence. The St. Bernard Memorial Funeral Home sponsored a “Hurricane Katrina Casket,” to bury their burdens by placing notes and letters about their memories and feelings into the casket.

Video of Hurricane Katrina – New Orleans from youtube:


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