In Autumn 2018, I was awarded an Arts Council England grant to run seven participatory artmaking workshops with survivors of modern-day slavery and human trafficking that are in receipt of support from Migrant Help. Lilacs In Bloom, a new artwork, is the outcome of these workshops.
Launching with a celebratory community event, on February 15th 2019 (6-9pm), Lilacs In Bloom will exhibited at My Gallery in Dover from 16th-23rd February.
The event will be free to attend and open to all, and there will be live Roma music and a Syrian buffet feast to enjoy. Local residents, community groups, and NGOs and charities working with refugees and vulnerable migrants will also be invited to come along. The exhibition will aim to raise awareness about the human and social consequences of human trafficking and modern-day slavery in the UK.
I generated this project to provide participants an opportunity to express their individuality and feel a sense of community through engaging in a collective experience. Over the course of the workshops participants experimented with paint, working directly onto artist’s linen and canvas, and with collaging and sewing found fabrics. Five participants attended the project: a man from Lithuania, who introduced us all to the duduk and the folk music of the Caucusus, and a single mother and her three young children from West Africa.
Lilacs In Bloom is funded by crowdfunding support and a National Lottery Arts Council England grant.
Migrant Help UK
Migrant Help UK is a UK charity, which helps asylum seekers and refugees navigate the complex asylum process. Migrant Help also provides support and guidance to vulnerable migrants and assists victims of human trafficking and modern slavery on their path to recovery.
GoFundMe campaign https://www.gofundme.com/antislaveryrefugeeartproject
Anti-Slavery Day https://www.antislaveryday.com