“Bonjour. In Marseille I am nicknamed La Quiche because I’m from Lorraine. Unfortunately, I am homeless. I was in the Légionnaires (military). In military we earn points for retirement. But due to an accident in Chad, I didn’t do the full 15 years of military so I can’t have the full retirement allowance and have to wait till I am 62 years old to be able to get out of here. After military, the army gave us the chance to retrain and change careers. I passed the diploma to become a firefighter and was employed because someone dropped out. I worked till 2014 but lost the job because I had a heart attack. I had government assistance but couldn’t work again as I couldn’t pass the health check up required for employment. I tried to apply for emergency allowance when I could no longer receive government assistance but was struggling with administration. They kept saying they didn’t receive my papers and at some point I had no money left to continue sending the documents.”
Find out more about his story here:
Hello all, here’s a video I’d really like to show everyone. I struggled a lot over the past 4 years about my role as an artist and what kind of impact I can possibly create with my work. Making of this video made me realise how my skills and resources can be used positively to give someone’s voice a platform to be heard. This will be shown in the exhibition at Central Saint Martins but I’m hoping to do a last push of publicity to encourage you all to come and join in my conversation zone to have a discussion about this.
Abdulhay and I met in May 2018 for a project in which we were both participants. On the first evening, we talked about war and violence and he shared with me his experiences. I thought about it for a few nights and offered:
“I have the filmmaking tools and skills, if there’s anything you’d like to say to the audience on British soil, let’s make a film.”
If he hadn’t told me he was from Syria I would not have known. In the making of the film I wanted to portray him in a way that was true and honest to how he presented himself to me. I wanted to show him as a person, with his own unique personality, character and love for his family, not that different from the rest of us.
In my subsequent research (many thanks to Mario Nicholas Hamad who’s doing a PHD on this war), I realised how severe the situation is and I am sad that this is all that I can do. Targeted military intervention is necessary to stop Assad’s airstrikes from killing more civilians. But for the British government to make that decision to get involved, public opinion is important. I hope this video provokes some thought and encourages more engagement in this issue.
Please, give some time and attention to this.
Thank you for reading, please help to share it!
by Liz Kirk Channing and Fié Neo
Staging Conversations is the coming together of two languages; wearable art and movement.
A three year long collaboration and development, this project is a sharing of the conversations and connections of a growing and evolving friendship. It is an on going experiment of how experience can be communicated through contrasting creative art forms.
This section is on grieving and how the overwhelming sensation of loss can be comforted through this sharing and friendship.
Intergenerational project with seniors from Claremont and All Change. Over 2 months, designers from Central Saint Martins worked with seniors from Islington to create an improvised performance with the facilitation of Improbable Theatre.
Photos by Monica AlcazarDuarte
Attempts on Attempts is based on Martin Crimp’s Attempts on her life. This adaptation was staged at Central Saint Martins, Studio Theatre 30 Nov – 1 Dec. The actors are staff working across the university and this piece, Kinda Funny which I designed and directed, featured Shaun, the face of student services office at Central Saint Martins. This piece is about misogyny, racism and arms ownership set in an American white trash living room. The TV plays violent football game footages which then switches to CNN mass shooting news reports.
“It’s been twenty years since Crimp wrote this play. What’s changed? Less shootings? Less racism? Less extremism?”
Spreading positivity across the globe. Starting from Venice Biennale to Edinburgh Fringe Festival and finally ending off with Singapore’s art hot pot Gillman Barracks, I brought memory sharing to these different cities. Sad memories are released from the owners and stay in the pocket, while happy memories travel to strangers’ pockets to stay in the form of smiles on their faces.
Share a memory in exchange for a happy memory.
My most memorable ones? Kids x2, Swimming with dolphins