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Jason Reblando

Jason Reblando is an artist and photographer based in Normal, Illinois. He received his MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago, and a BA in Sociology from Boston College. He is the recipient of a U.S. Fulbright Fellowship to the Philippines, two Artist Fellowship Awards from the Illinois Arts Council, and a Community Arts Assistance Program grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. Jason’s work focuses on labor, migration, and the socioeconomic forces that shape communities. His projects have been published in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Financial Times, Politico, Camera Austria, PDNedu, Slate, Bloomberg Businessweek, Marketplace, MAS Context, Real Simple, Places Journal, Chicago Magazine, the Chicago Tribune, and the Chicago Reader. His photographs are collected in the Library of Congress, the Milwaukee Art Museum, the Pennsylvania State University Special Collections, the Midwest Photographers Project of the Museum of Contemporary Photography, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. His monograph New Deal Utopias was published in 2017 by Kehrer Verlag. He is an Assistant Professor of Photography in the Wonsook Kim School of Art at Illinois State University.

Artist Statement

Requiem commemorates the lives of 34 journalists and 24 civilians killed in in 2009 in a grisly event known as the Maguindanao Massacre, named after the rural province in the southern Philippines where the killings occurred. Henchmen of a powerful political dynasty ambushed and shot a convoy of media workers and supporters of a political rival, then buried the victims in a mass grave. In Requiem, I transform objects associated with Philippine cultural identity into symbols of mourning. Using the Van Dyke Brown process, I depict items such as handkerchiefs and barongs, a Philippine dress shirt, floating in an empty brown void to allude to the unceremonious burial the victims received. I feel personally affected by this incident, not only because I have worked as a photojournalist in the past, but also I am related to one of the slaughtered journalists, Bong Reblando. The empty barongs memorialize all who were slaughtered, as well as honor the dangerous work of journalists around the world.

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Release Date: July 22, 2022

The artist will be donating proceeds to Kundiman.

Requiem No. 1 - Barong, 2021