»No Stranger Place«
Opening / Artist Talk: Wednesday, January 11, 2017, 11-11:45h
Exhibition: January 11 –
21, extended until Jan 29, 2017
Location: Berlin Central Station, Washingtonplatz entrance foyer (ground floor)
Opening hours: 24/7
Hundreds of thousands of people sought refuge in Europe during the last year, with most fleeing conflicts, persecution and human rights violations in the near and middle east. The events of recent months have made many people feel unsettled but they have sparked also an unprecedented readiness to help, and engendered feelings of solidarity. Here in Berlin, and across Europe, people have invited refugees to live with them in their own homes.
No Stranger Place is about relationships and what becomes possible when people form them.”
Through his portraits and the accompanying stories, the photographer offers a personal insight into their lives together. In the process, the boundaries between locals and refugees dissolve, and it is the people and their relationships with one another that come into focus. The portraits show curiosity, solidarity and openness, each a significant characteristic of the civil society engagement in the three countries.
It is easy to forget within the current political climate that it is ordinary people, of all walks of life, who are making a decisive contribution to the process of integration. “In addition to work and education, it is the valuable social and cultural exchange between locals and refugees that makes strangers become fellow human beings, neighbours and friends,” said UNHCR representative Katharina Lumpp in Berlin.
No Stranger Place was developed by Aubrey Wade in partnership with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency.
Read more on the project website: nostrangerplace.org
Strangers on a train
Wilhelm, Brian and Inas, a refugee from Syria, met through a chance encounter on a train just four days after Inas arrived in Germany. Ten days later, Inas moved in with the couple of 25 years, in November 2015.
Quiet librarian and flamboyant Syrian artist form unlikely bond
Alqumit Alhamad is Syrian, Muslim and gay. He arrived in Sweden on a snowy day in February this year with a small backpack containing a change of clothes, art tools and CDs of Lady Gaga, Björk, and Barbra Streisand.
Jewish family opens their Berlin home to Muslim refugee
Every week, the Jellinek family gathers for a Shabbat dinner in their central Berlin home. Chaim, his wife Kyra and three of their four children sit around a candle-lit table to recite blessings over wine and good food.
This year, their weekly tradition has included an unlikely guest. Twenty-eight-year old Kinan, a Syrian Muslim, has been living with the Jellineks since November 2015. He joins them for Shabbat most Fridays and often cooks Syrian meals that he has learned to make by watching videos on YouTube.
A friendship bigger than their studio flat
Uta (44) hosts Hamid, from Afghanistan, in a small studio apartment in Berlin Marzahn, a sprawling estate of high-rise blocks in east Berlin. Built in the late seventies and early eighties to provide modern housing to residents of the city’s older and (at the time) neglected central boroughs, the estate became characterised in the nineties by strong anti-migrant sentiment and support for far-right groups.
We are all refugees
At the beginning of their friendship, Newruz (20) couldn’t stay with Claudia and Tobias in Berlin for more than a few days at a time. The Kurdish Syrian from Homs arrived in Germany in July 2015, but was registered and housed in a refugee centre in Meißen in Saxony, Tobias’ hometown.
Swedish same-sex couple welcomes Muslim family
The last thing Syrian refugee Ahmed, a devout Muslim, expected when he arrived in Sweden with his two teenaged children last November was that they would be living in a church.