10 Oct-17 November 2013

How do museums create our understandings of cultural identities, and does migrant art generate alternative connections which cut across such boundaries? 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 Manchester Museum.

The artist-led cultural activist group Virtual Migrants brings together a sample of artists from Manchester and Glasgow and a museum curator to present an interwoven set of visual work, along with two events which combine discussion with performance.

Six artists use photography, painting and print-making to look sideways from the broken line between homeland and destination. An exhibition by Virtual Migrants (Manchester), in partnership with Street Level Photoworks (Glasgow).

Exhibiting artists include award-winning Amang Mardokhy from Kurdish Iraq, whose paintings touch on repression, history and resistance. Photographer Iseult Timmermans worked with refugee women at Glasgow’s Red Road Community Studio exploring “how military violence affects women’s lives”. Iranian photographer Mazaher creates detailed montages combining human forms with Persian-influenced designs. The International Women’s Group from North Glasgow use photographic mixed media in response to issues of violence against women. Bold paintings and prints by Tracey Zengeni from Zimbabwe reflect on influences between her homeland and the UK. Painter and mixed media artist Flora Alexander presents intricate paper-cuts, subverting popular notions of her native Iran.

A special display of museum objects by curator Stephen Welsh (Manchester Museum) challenges how cultures were categorised during the era of colonial object collecting, which among other things suppressed diaspora expression.

Special Event on Weds 30th October, 6pm – 9pm, at Manchester Museum

RE-PRESENTING REFUGEES’ panel discussion
PASSENGER 12’ multimedia performance
COMMITTED TO REPRESENT’ exhibition premiere.

Read more here and here.