Notre Dame University



Artist Maurice Salamé and wife pay a visit to LERC

6th July 2009, LERC, NDU
Reported by Elie Nabhan

Internationally renowned, Lebanese born artist and painter Mr. Maurice Salamé, accompanied  by his wife Bernadette, paid a visit to the Lebanese Emigration Research Center. At the Center they met up with an old friend, LERC Director Ms. Guita Hourani, and were introduced to LERC’s premises, infrastructure and the Lebanese Emigration Archives and Database (LEAD).

During an official trip to Australia in July 2008, representing NDU/LERC at the Maronite Youth Day, Ms. Hourani was warmly welcomed and  accommodated by Mr. and Mrs. Salamé in Sydney.

Mr. Salamé was the first artist to donate one of his paintings to the Lebanese and Migration Museum. The title of his painting is Evacuation, which illustrates his experience of being evacuated during the Hezbollah-Israel War of July 2006.

Artist Maurice Salamé and wife Bernadette stand beside the Evacuation painting at the Lebanon and Migration Museum at NDU (July 2009).

Mr. Salamé graduated from the famed Academy of Fine Arts in Rome in 1967. He was a recipient of the Academy’s prestigious Minerva Medal for best painter. Apart from teaching and exhibiting, Mr. Salamé was commissioned by the Nigerian Government in 1973 to produce 300 African-inspired paintings to decorate the walls of an international hotel in Illorin, Nigeria. Mr. Salamé continued to paint and he is always learning new artistic techniques, lately developing skills in etching and lithography.

Mr. Salamé met his wife in Rome and moved to Lebanon; however the outbreak of the 1975 war forced him to go with his wife to the land where she was born, Australia. Mr. Salamé is herself of Lebanese descent, neé Sahade. Her father, Chehade Sahade, emigrated to Australia from Sebeel in Northern Lebanon in 1926.  

At LERC The Salamés were given a presentation of LEAD by LERC Indexer Mrs. Liliane Haddad being totally engrossed with the volume and variety of the work. They were delighted to see that Maurice’s biography and photos of his paintings were archived. The Salamés were then given a guided tour of the Lebanese and Migration Museum at NDU by Mr. Elie Nabhan. Mr. Salamé was intensely pleased to have seen his painting in the museum and promised to give more of his artwork to the Center.