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EMST: Face Forward …into my home

Following its first successful presentation in Athens, Greece, the interactive art project Face Forward …into my home travels for the first time outside Greece and is hosted in Tabacka Kulturfabrik Gallery, Kosice in Slovakia

By: EBR - Posted: Friday, January 18, 2019

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All participants of Face Forward …into my home are benefitting from ESTIA, the Emergency Support To Integration and Accommodation programme implemented by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, in collaboration with the Greek Government, local authorities and NGOs, and with funding by the European Commission.
All participants of Face Forward …into my home are benefitting from ESTIA, the Emergency Support To Integration and Accommodation programme implemented by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, in collaboration with the Greek Government, local authorities and NGOs, and with funding by the European Commission.

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By Alexandra Papaisidorou


23 January – 22 February 2019

Tabacka Kulturfabrik Gallery, Gorkeho 2, Kosice, Slovakia

Opening: Wednesday, 23rd of January 2019, at 16:00 

Opening hours: Monday - Friday: 12.00 - 22.00

Free entrance

 
Production 
National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens (EMST)
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency 
Financed by the European Commission 

Organization of the exhibition in Kosice
Embassy of the Slovak Republic in Athens
National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens (EMST)
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency 
Kosice Self-governing Region
Under the auspices of the President of the Slovak Republic H.E. Mr. Andrej Kiska

Exhibition curators / Idea-Implementation of the project
Μarina Tsekou, Education Curator EMST
Ioannis Vastardis, Photographer

Following its first successful presentation in Athens, Greece and its warm reception in two more Greek cities, Heraklion, Crete and Thessaloniki, the interactive art project Face Forward …into my home travels for the first time outside Greece and is hosted in Tabacka Kulturfabrik Gallery, Kosice in Slovakia.   

Face Forward …into my home includes storytelling workshops inspired by a selection of contemporary artworks from the collection of the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens (EMST), the photo shooting of portraits, and an exhibition with photo portraits and recorded personal stories of refugees and asylum-seekers who are now living in Greece.

All participants of Face Forward …into my home are benefitting from ESTIA, the Emergency Support To Integration and Accommodation programme implemented by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, in collaboration with the Greek Government, local authorities and NGOs, and with funding by the European Commission.

In Kosice the exhibition is organized in collaboration with the Embassy of the Slovak Republic in Athens with the support of the Office of Kosice Self-governing Region and serves under the auspices of the President of the Slovak Republic H.E. Mr. Andrej Kiska.

The personal narratives were translated in the Slovak language in cooperation with the Department of British and American Studies of Faculty of Arts of the Pavol Jozef Safarik University of Kosice. 

ESTIA means Home

Face Forward …into my home introduces the public to the faces behind the numbers and the refugee situation in Greece, and tells their stories - the family members, the woman, the man, the teenager. 

Getting to know these human stories, one realizes that even though they lost almost everything when they were forced to flee their homes, they still share many of the same desires and dreams that we all do. They haven’t lost their identity, their skills or their hope. They just long to resume a normal life. 

The ESTIA programme helps them to realize exactly this: through accommodation in apartments and provision of monthly cash support, refugees and asylum-seekers are able to lead more secure and normal lives, regain the dignity of choice and gradually take back control of their life.

 At the same time, Face Forward …into my home introduces these people as residents of a country that has embraced so many cultures, religions and ideas – a diversity that is defined through social solidarity and mutual respect, so that we can all feel “at Home”. 

Face Forward …into my home was designed and implemented by EMST’s Education Department, in collaboration with UNHCR, and is funded by the European Commission, in the framework of the ESTIA programme, which provides urban accommodation and cash assistance to thousands of asylum seekers and refugees in Greece.  

Face Forward …into my home consists of the following three phases: 

Phase I: Storytelling Workshops

Βeneficiaries of the ESTIA programme are invited to share feelings, memories, hopes and aspirations, inspired by artworks from the EMST collection. Using these as a starting point and as a stimulus to explore contemporary social issues, including forced migration, social integration, cultural exchange and social interaction, the participants create autobiographical stories that reveal moments from the past, build personal narratives about the present, and make plans for the future.

Phase II: Photographic Portraits

Based on the narratives that unfold during the workshops, photographic portraits depict the refugees and asylum-seekers in their daily life in Athens. Accompanied by the stories, the portraits shed light on each person’s unique character. At the same time, both photographs and stories reveal the “human face” of the refugee plight and remind us of the things, emotions, feelings that connect us all – our common humanity. 

Phase III: Exhibition of Photographic Portraits and Personal Narratives

The personal narratives and photographic portraits will be presented at Tabacka Kulturfabrik Gallery, in Kosice, Slovakia, from 23 January to 22 February 2019. The works from the EMST collection that prompted the narratives will be also presented in digital form in the exhibition space, in addition to a short documentary video of the whole project.  

About UNHCR

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, was established on December 14, 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. UNHCR safeguards the rights and well-being of refugees and stateless people around the world.

In more than six decades, the agency has helped tens of millions of people restart their lives. UNHCR is on the front lines of the world's major humanitarian crises, including Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic, Afghanistan, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Myanmar, and countless other emergencies. 

Apart from its humanitarian assistance programmes, UNHCR is helping refugees rebuild their lives and trying to find solutions for their future. Learning languages, the recognition of their skills and knowledge and access to the labour market are valuable for easing their financial, social and cultural integration in the hosting communities. 

About the EU's actions

The European Union and its Member States are the world's leading donor of humanitarian aid. Relief assistance is an expression of European solidarity with people in need all around the world. It aims to save lives, prevent and alleviate human suffering, and safeguard the integrity and human dignity of populations affected by natural disasters and man-made crises. 

The European Commission ensures rapid and effective delivery of EU relief assistance through its two main instruments: civil protection and humanitarian aid.

Through its Civil Protection and Humanitarian aid Operations department (ECHO), the European Commission helps millions of victims of conflict and disasters every year. With headquarters in Brussels and a global network of field offices, the department provides assistance to the most vulnerable people on the basis of humanitarian needs. For more information, please visit the European Commission's website.

 

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