4 February 2016—4 March 2016
Russian occupation of Crimea and military invasion into Eastern Ukraine forced half a million people to abandon their homes and flee in order to escape military actions and prosecution for their political views. Today, 18 months later, when many refugees have already settled into new homes, it becomes clear that the problems caused by the involuntary resettlement are not limited to material losses.
Occupation has not only forced people out of their homes, they were thrown out of continuity of their personal histories.
While packing documents and money in a hurry, they have left scattered grandmother’s photo albums, mother’s bijouterie, and their first toys, all those trinkets that used to mark their progress in time. Those are the things that no one would rescue, they are useless for settling down in a new place and would not make the new life better. For many years, people have been stockpiling those silent witnesses of their existence only to abandon them in a critical moment, thus depriving themselves of material memories. The scale of this trauma is yet to be estimated.
Cut off from their roots, deprived of past, uncertain about future, lacking support in the present, the forced migrants are unable to move further until this loss is apprehended, described, and analysed, and until the emptiness caused by it is filled again.
Each participant of the project tells about loss experience in the first person as someone personally involved in a traumatic incident, using all the available artistic media to analyse the possibility of reconstructing their own memorabilia.
Partner of parallel events programme