Through Art, people give shape to all the things that have defined them
The April 23rd is a symbolic date in world literature. It is the date on which several prominent authors, William Shakespeare and Miguel Cervantes died. UNESCO decided in 1995, to pay a world-wide tribute to books and authors on this date. On the occasion of this World Book and Copyright Day, SolidarityNow, presents you the “My Book” project. The “My Book” project is a collection of poems, short stories, lyrics, and paintings created by migrants and refugees, beneficiaries of SolidarityNow’s *ESTIA program.
Today, “My Book” is more topical than ever, because it reminds us that in every “pandemic” that can affect humanity – so each and every one of us – are the people and their creativity that give us the strength but also the belief that in the end, together we will succeed.
“Art is not a mirror to hold up to society, but a hammer with which to shape it”, wrote the poet Vladimir Mayakovsky. Armond, Ahmad, Ibrahim, Fatima and Abdul, Komel, Wasan and Sana, Zainab, Nakam, Majd and Ali, used words and colors to tell their own story about the past and the present, about what defined them and still does. “My Book” is also distillation of their thoughts, the expression of their fears and hopes for the future – their dreams to live a “normal” life again, free of labels and stigma.
SolidarityNow, through this new publication wants to highlight the artistic work of people who were violently forced to abandon their homeland and are trying to start a new life in another country. We must not forget that these people, along with their luggage, carry their knowledge and talents as well.
“My Book is certainly their book. But it is also Ours. It refutes in a simple way stereotypes and prejudice. The authors transcend their potential and they encourage us to follow. Thus, we can all do better than we thought we could”, stresses Antigone Lyberaki, General Manager of SolidarityNow.
You can read the book by visiting the links:
* The artists were beneficiaries of SolidarintyNow’s Accommodation program, as part of the ESTIA programme – Emergency Support for Integration and Accommodation, is supported by UNHCR and co-funded by the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund of the European Union.