Renowned glass artist, Hasna Sal, generously gifted her award-winning glass sculpture, “Dystopia: The Story of Human Trafficking,” to EAG Advertising & Marketing. Sal’s sculpture was showcased at her solo exhibition, “Into the Light – Homage to Victims of Human Trafficking,” which took place at the Kansas City Museum – Education Gallery from January 17, 2022 – March 31, 2022. After the exhibit closed, Sal knew our contemporary office with its unique design and glass architectural elements should be her sculpture’s ultimate and final installation. It is now permanently installed in our office’s glass-enclosed conference room in Kansas City’s Crossroads Art District.
Giving a Voice to Trafficking Victims
The “Into the Light” exhibition gave trafficking victims, some of the most marginalized women in society, a voice. Also, it served as a platform for Sal’s advocacy work and interest in social justice. Historic Kansas City granted the exhibition the Neighborhood Stabilization Merit award given to projects that significantly impact the revitalization of an historic neighborhood.
Another work from “Into the Light” consists of four glass panels, “Isolation,” “Damnation,” “Redemption” and “Salvation,” chronicling the passage from victimhood to empowerment. It is the nation’s first memorial to human trafficking. The panels are installed at Lykins Square Park, once a Kansas City hub for the sex trade and human trafficking.
With Installing “Dystopia” Comes Responsibility
Michele Markham, EAG president and CEO, says, “Hasna’s reaction to our office space and her wish to make EAG the permanent home for ‘Dystopia’ were, of course, complimentary, but also came with a sense of responsibility to be stewards of the message behind the sculpture and those it honors.”
“Dystopia” is one of two socially-conscious pieces of art recently installed at EAG. The other is a canvas painting by Felix Maull, which honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and those lost to police shootings.
LEARN MORE ABOUT MAULL’S PAINTING: Putting Art Where Our Heart Is
Sal’s Upcoming Projects, Including the New KCI Airport
In 2021, Sal was one of two artists chosen to create two-dimensional artwork for the terminal walls in the new KCI Airport scheduled to open in 2023. She is also working on a public park project, “Live the Light,” for the Northeast neighborhood’s Independence Plaza Park.
Currently, Sal is fundraising for a Penn Valley Memorial project. “My proposed installation is called ‘Damnation.’ It depicts the lives of victims caught in the shackles of human trafficking—the isolation they face from society and subsequent captivity in the hands of those who want to commodify them. Their voices are suppressed, and they are forced away to live in the heinous world of prostitution,” Sal explains.
“This installation is homage to Veronica April Neverdusky. In 1993, Veronica, 21 years old and the mother of three young children, was found murdered in Penn Valley Park. Her case remained unsolved until an arrest was made in March of 2007. This installation acts as fulcrum to raise awareness for women and girls caught in the vicious, violent cycle of commercial sexual exploitation.”
More About Hasna Sal
Hasna Sal was born in India and educated in Europe and the U.S. She earned a degree in architecture from The Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston and studied landscape architecture at Harvard University. In 2002, Sal relocated to Kansas where she worked as an architect and taught Design Studio at the University of Kansas. Today, she is a full-time artist. Sal’s studio, Glass Concepts 360, focuses on design services, custom artwork and commissioned projects and is a gallery for her glass sculptures, glass panels, jewelry and functional objects for the home.