100 years of arty refugees
Josef Herman by Elena Montazemi Safari
Josef Herman was a Jewish-Polish artist. Herman fled from Poland to Britain during the mass persecution of Jews during the Holocaust in 1938. Herman settled in Wales, More here.
Eva Frankfurther by Joshua Low
Eva Frankfurther, a German Jew and a talented figurative painter, grew up as a refugee during this era of turmoil. At the age of nine, she fled with her family to England in the late 1930s to avoid Nazi persecution in Germany. More here
Robert Vas by Joshua Low
After the Hungarian uprising in 1956, Robert Vas, a BBC film director, sought sanctuary in the UK. He has made many seminal films. His first film, Refuge England (1959), depicts the day in the life of a Hungarian refugee who arrives in England. More here.
Eva Jiřičná by Mia Taylor
Eva Jiřičná was initially part of an exchange programme and was asked to work for the Greater London Council as an architect. In August of 1968, Warsaw Pact forces invaded Czechoslovakia with 500,000 soldiers. Around 300,000 people feared for their lives, forcing them to flee. This meant leaving their homes, families, and the country of their birth. The crisis was named the Prague Spring. Its legacy echoed in the lives of its displaced artists across the world. More here.
Hong Dam by Mia Taylor
Internationally celebrated artists have arisen from the depths of this tragedy. Hong Dam was one of them. Resettled in the UK, Dam fled Vietnam at eight years old. More here.
Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam (MIA) by Saher Ali
After 26 years of bloodshed, destruction and chaos, the Sri Lankan government defeated LTTE in May 2009. However, by that time, it has left 80,000–100,000 dead, over 300,000 internally displaced and over 145,000 refugees. Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam, (known as M.I.A) was one of these refugees. Her unique musical blends of rap and traditional Asian music ... More here.
Mersiha Mesihoivc by Saher Ali
In the 1990's series of wars broke out in Yugoslavia (then known as the Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia). The Bosnian war was considered one of the bloodiest ... Mersiha Mesihoivc was a Bosnian refugee who fled to Sweden in 1995. More here.
Watch this Space
Kinan Azmeh & Kevork Mourad by Elena Montazemi Safari
Kinan Azmeh is a Syrian composer and clarinettist. Kevork Mourad is a Syrian-Armenian visual artist. In 2020, Azmeh and Mourad performed an audio-visual performance called Home Within. In this work, art and music create reflection on the Syrian revolution and its aftermath. Rather than following a narrative, the artists document specific moments in Syria’s recent history and reach into their emotional content in a semi-abstract way. More here.