Critical Conversations: Perspectives on Refugees & Migrants
Refugee artists came together to showcase talent in art, music and theatre in a variety of activities at the French and German Cultural Centres
Alliance Française de, Nairobi – Artistic and Cultural Events and Goethe-Institut Nairobi with support from the French-German Cultural Fund are hosted Critical Conversations. This is a platform through which perspectives from the three receiving states (Kenya, France and Germany) around refugees and migrants are being discussed through screenings, panel discussions, art exhibitions, theatre and music.
UNHCR supported the launch of this event by facilitating the participation of 30 refugees from Nairobi, Kakuma and Dadaab. The refugee artists came together to showcase talent in art, music and theatre in a variety of activities at the French and German Cultural Centres.
Visual artists exhibited various pieces of art at an exhibition dubbed “Of Ships Passing in the Night.” The effects of migration and displacement were illustrated creatively and daringly through art.
There was also a theatrical performance presented by artists who were trained by Olivier Malcor, a trainer in participative theatre and performing arts. The “Out of the Box” performance was an engaging form of theatre that allowed spectators to be part of the play and contribute ideas and solutions to some of the social issues presented in the play.
Lastly, there was a music concert dubbed “Refugenius” put together by Octopizzo, a Kenyan hip-hop artist, who works closely with UNHCR to mentor and train musicians from the camps under the Artists for Refugees livelihood project. There were colourful performances by musicians from Nairobi and Kakuma with a special performance by Octopizzo and the artists at the tailend of the event.
UNHCR Country Representative Raouf Mazou applauded the French and German Cultural Centres for organising the event. “We are grateful for this platform that has given refugees an opportunity to express themselves. This is a project that we are proud to be associated with.”
The event ended with a panel discussion on “Forced Migration: Perceptions and Reality”.