SPECIAL GUESTS ANNOUNCED: Mavis Makhaza from GM Immigration Aid Unit and WAST (Women Asylum Speakers Together), plus Tony Openshaw from ASHA (Asylum Support Housing Advice) will speak about their work in relation to the exhibition
Stephen Welsh, the Curator of Living Cultures at Manchester Museum, discusses museum collections and 90 Degree Citizen in the context of Victorian colonialism and ethnography in this short video
How does the legal work of the GMIAU (Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit) help refugees to rebuild their lives? What motivates the caseworkers? How do refugees respond to the challenges that the asylum system throws at them? This exhibition is a celebration of the work that caseworkers do and a testament to the courage of refugees and people seeking asylum.
An exhibition of photography and texts as a series of 12 portable panels by the Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit, in partnership with Virtual Migrants. This exhibition is available for borrowing or hire (if you have available funds), and a speaker can be provided if desired. The panels can be set up to accompany any relevant event, activity, cultural or artistic programme involving an audience. Please contact us or contact GMIAU directly via www.gmiau.org .
An exhibition celebrating immigration caseworkers, refugees and people seeking asylum
A gallery showing all of the panels is available to view right now at www.virtualmigrants.net/committedtorepresent/gallery , and photographs of the panels exhibited in various venues can be seen at www.virtualmigrants.net/committedtorepresent/exhibitionphotos. These will give a good idea of what the exhibition is and how it can be presented.
Design and direction by Kooj Chuhan / Metaceptive Media. Research and text by Ursula Sharma. Photography by Mazaher. Committed To Represent – exhibition celebrating immigration caseworkers, refugees and people seeking asylum in 12 portable panels. Here is a quick overview of some places it has been shown at, followed by a statement from GMIAU.
Photos of the launch at Z-Arts, June 2013 (CLICK on a photo to view them in full scale):
This was also shown as a pop-up exhibition, produced with Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit, on Weds 30th October to Friday 1st November. Part of 90 degree citizen a rare exhibition of work by a new wave of visual artists whose experiences include life as refugees in the UK engaging with objects from The Manchester Museum. A few photos of the exhibition at the Manchester Museum (CLICK on a photo to view them in full scale):
On Wednesday 30th October at 5.00pm there was a talk + preview of the “Committed To Represent” pop-up exhibition. A video of this including the powerful speeches by Isobel and Mavis will be put up online soon.
The Committed To Represent exhibition was also shown at the Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit’s Annual General Meeting on Saturday 25th January 2014 (CLICK on a photo to view them in full scale):
Statement from GMIAU at their 2014 AGM:
We are in very turbulent times. During the past 12 months legal aid has been removed for most immigration cases and the government is ‘consulting’ on the next set of cuts which will include further restrictions on access to the law, including judicial review and appeals, and the insidious ‘residency test’. The Immigration Bill has been introduced and if it get passed as it is it will include duties on landlords and banks to check the immigration status of potential tenants and customers. Immigration will once again be top of the political agenda in the run up to general election in 2015 and none of the public debate about immigration is positive. This makes it even more difficult for the people that GMIAU is here to support and represent – not just in a legal sense but also to stand up against the injustice and discrimination that is the reality of many peoples day to day lives.
We need our supporters more than ever. We need to work together to steer the organisation through these challenging times, to make sure not only that we survive but that we’re stronger and louder than before in our defence of access to justice and human rights. Please come and join us on the 25th need to be doing over the next year and beyond to make sure we stay at the forefront of creating a better and more positive contribution to the lives of people in the North West who need immigration legal advice and representation.
VM members Tracey Zengeni, Aidan Jolly and Sai Murray will be performing at this UniTEA Arts and Culture Event at The Brink in Liverpool today as part of Refugee Week. It’s a free event, open to all with tea, coffee and cakes of the world (!) available for the first 100 people.
Full details from www.refugeeweek.org.uk below
Arts and Culture event to celebrate the positive contribution made by refugees to the culture, history and heritage of the UK
This is an arts and culture event, with 4 acts across the evening. The main theme of the evening is celebrating the positive contribution refugees have made to the culture history and heritage of the UK.
Tracey Zengeni is Zimbabwean artist who is bringing several pieces of her art to show and talk about, in addition to some acapella . Raj Govindarajah is a Sri Lankan film maker who has made a film about his friends experience of fleeing Sri Lanka and becoming a refugee in Britain. Aidan Jolly and Sai Murray are a musician and poet respectively, who have worked with many refugee and migrant groups.
There will also be a ‘Cakes of the World’ section, where desserts from common refugee origin countries will be available for attendees, and they can guess where the desserts originate.
In addition, there will be an ancestor mapping activity to plot the journeys of attendees relations throughout history.
The event is open to all, with free drinks tokens available to the first 100 people. It would be preferable if attendees could RSVP to: Jhughes@redcross.org.uk.
|Date||From 19/06/2013 to 19/06/2013|
|Time||From 16:00 to 19:00|
21 Parr Street
|Category||Arts and Culture|
at Z-ARTS 6th-29th June 2013, including Launch Event at 6pm on 6th June
Exhibition opening times are 5pm – 9pm weekdays, 10am – 4pm Saturdays, closed Sundays.
Committed to Represent
An exhibition of photography and texts as a series of portable panels by the Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit, in partnership with Virtual Migrants
How does the legal work of the GMIAU help refugees to rebuild their lives? What motivates the caseworkers? How do refugees respond to the challenges that the asylum system throws at them?
This exhibition is a celebration of the work that caseworkers do and a testament to the courage of refugees and people seeking asylum.
Design and direction by Kooj Chuhan. Research and text by Ursula Sharma. Photography by Mazaher.
Refusing The Refused
A short film created for ASHA (Asylum Support Housing Advice) from footage of a training workshop on Asylum Destitution on 22nd February 2013, a Virtual Migrants production by Kooj Chuhan
Destitution effectively means poverty and mental suffering at a chronic level, and this workshop involved a range of strong and emotive presentations and dialogues on the experience of destitution among people seeking asylum, the legal and wider political framework for this, and what kinds of support and action can be possible.
ASHA helps asylum seekers whose applications have been refused and fully determined, and whose status renders them homeless and destitute.
Both of these pieces of work are still ‘in development’. They involve intersecting elements of documentary, community portraiture, campaigning and education. This is an integral part of Virtual Migrants’ critical practice in artistic, media and cultural work.
Accompanying these works is an exhibition of paintings by Elizabeth Kwant, titled Tracing Presence. This comprises a series of large-scale portraits developed during her Artist’s in Residence with The Boaz Trust, a charity working to help destitute asylum seekers in Manchester.
6th-29th June at Z-arts, 335 Stretford Road, Manchester M15 5ZA
An exhibition to coincide with Refugee Week 17-23 June 2013