While waiting to be granted sanctuary in Denmark, I spent more than one and half years in their asylum-seekers’ camps across Sjælland region before I was granted refugee status in June 2001. There I embarked on reviving my far-too-long snoozed artistic skills. To endure the painful waiting, not knowing what the future would hold, and the psychological effect the uncertainty had, I started drawing and painting again.
At that time in my life, nothing was in my control. My future, my identity and my entire being as a young woman full of hope, aspirations and ambitions had been reduced to a case number kept filed in a ministerial drawer. My fate was again on hold in a ‘checking point’ waiting to be judged whether or not my case is going to tick enough (in)eligibility) boxes to fail or pass the country’s decrees. The only things that remained in my control were my drawing pencils and papers and my very own imagination of a life full of love, piece and beauty. To my surprise, in my art pieces it turned out that I was much more capable technically than I thought. Amidst all the ugliness and hostilities that the asylum-seeking processes held, I tried to create a sanctuary for my soul and mind asserting that “La Vie est Belle”. I learned I could create beautiful objects despite the atrociousness!
My aim in sharing these blogs with you readers is to give insight into and a personal account of my displacement journeys. I will also be presenting my artwork alongside the stories associated with them, to reflect upon various issues which many refugees encounter in their diasporic countries as well as in their transnational cyber-belongings.
The blog will also touch upon concerns of a universal character including human rights, migration, refugees, the environment, etc. Immigrants and the refugee crises in particular have recently been a hot debate on the global stage and thus a tool for politicians to hook and win voters during the elections. As an insider within the refugee crises– fleeing from my homeland, going through the asylum processes in a European country, later granted refugee status and then labelled as a minority ethnic woman, my writings will touch upon how these diverse processes can create, transform, infiltrate or annul our different identities. Alongside these narrations many questions may arise for readers and may be worth further discussion and reflection, so any feedback and comments are welcome.