Homelands, places of belonging is an ongoing project for and by newcomer/refugee artists led by the International Yehudi Menuhin Foundation.
Last week, on Wednesday 31st of March at 8:30PM, the Homelands project presented its online digital talkshow. It was the opportunity to discover the co-creation projects made in Brussels, Antwerp and Namen through exclusive interviews led by Annabelle Van Nieuwenhuyse, videos and artistic interventions.
For the shooting of this talkshow, Homelands decided to collaborate with Cinemaximiliaan. Cinemaximiliaan is a platform with and by newcomers in Belgium. The initiative started in an improvised camp at the Maximiliaan Park in Brussels with daily film screenings. Cinemaximiliaan quickly grew by the commitment of a vast network of volunteers, amongst them many newcomers.
This community project matches newcomer and refugee artists with a staff member of a local cultural institution. As a tandem they start a co-creative and artistic process with local community groups with the notion of “HOMELANDS” as a common thread: an artistic research on what it means to feel at home, to belong to a place, a city or a community.
TIMUR MAGOMEDGADZHIEV & ALINE LEYNEN @KUNSTZ
Timur Magomedgadzhiev (actor), Aline Leynen (cultural worker) and Lore Loyens (director co-create mainly with intercultural adults interested in theatre. Their project resulted in a film composed of different theatre scenes and performance art around the theme of the project.
“For us, at KunstZ, working with Homelands is an opportunity to give Timur the chance to develop professionally, to give workshops himself.” Aline Leynen from KunstZ.
LEANDRO RAMIREZ & JEROME MARDAGA @ROCK’S COOL
Leandro Ramirez (graffiti, architect) and Jérôme Mardaga (musicien) worked with a group of all ages made up of 90% of students from the music school but also of peoplee linked to these students or who have heard about the project. Together they will make a projection of a documentary with live performance (graffiti and music).
“Leandro, in fact, is the engine. He brings a lot of point of view that come from another culture, another continent. That’s the whole point of this project, it’s to be able to benefit from this experience that comes from abroad.” Jérôme Mardaga from Rock’s Cool.
ALIDA HEIKERK & ADAMS MENSAH @FAMEUS
During the first period of the workshops, Alida and Adams worked with adults (mostly refugees) from all ages in relation to the arts. Alida made a typical clothing from Suriname (lendendoek), with the integration of the self-made jewels by the participants.
“From the designs that the participants created, Alida went to work on a fabric that means a lot to the women and society of her homeland. On this fabric, all the ideas and feelings that arose while designing the jewelry come together as a whole.” Adams Mensah from Fameus.
ZEINABOU HAMIDOU DIORI & HILDE VAN GEEL @GC DE MARKTEN
Zeinabou Hamidou Diori (painter, visual art) and Hilde Van Geel (cultural worker), together with the group of participants mainly consisting of homeless people (via Hobo vzw) and vulnerable target groups (via Link=Brussel vzw), are heading towards an installation of small clay figures and a photo exhibition.
“Using clay and paint, Zeinabou stimulated the imagination of the participants. Hands, fruit, castles and other figures were modelled and painted and each workshop ended with soup and a chat.” Hilde Van Geel from Gc De Markten.
HUSSEIN RASSIM & OCTAVIO AMOS & MATTIAS VERHELST
@GC DE KROON
The 3 musical artists, Hussein Rassim (musician, oud), Octavio Amos (musician, stylist) and Mattias Verhelst (musician, cultural worker) will present, together with youngsters from Chiro, a unique flag and music-literary performances based on texts and songs created by the participants and the artists.
“Hussein Rassim took of on a journey of discovery about what the Chiro is about, since this was something he didn’t know growing up as a child. Together, the participants exchanged information and feelings through dialogue, and try to capture their experiences artistically in two ways that are core to identity building.” Mattias Verhelst from Gc De Kroon.