Farooq Hassan could easily paint his life story as a tragedy. Over the course of 50 years, he had built a standing as a national and internationally renowned Iraqi artist whose work had hung in galleries in London, Amman, Basrah and Baghdad. In addition, he had designed over 80 stamps for the Iraqi post office and he owned a huge, five-bedroom home. “It was my gallery,” remembers Hassan. Then his life changed. In 2003, when hostile forces looted and stripped Baghdad’s National Art Museum, Hassan lost 10 of his large paintings on display there. Against a soundtrack of bombs and gunfire, life in Iraq was uncertain. Whenever he left home, recalls Hassan, “I [would] always say to my wife, ‘Goodbye. Maybe I will return alive. Maybe I will not.’ ” In 2010, at age 71, Hassan and his wife, Haifa did follow their daughter to the United States. And they did lose everything. Today they have made a new life for themselves in a modest, two-bedroom apartment in Beaverton. “It’s small, but my wife’s heart is very big,” says Hassan.
The Geezer Gallery and Basic Space Gallery are proud to collaborate in exhibiting and showcasing the works of Farooq Hassan.
The sale of Farooq’s works help support The Geezer Gallery’s Art Therapy programs for low income seniors and those with Alzheimer’s Disease.