You know war is coming, it’s on your doorstep.
You only have a few minutes to pack and run.
What would you take with you?
Belongings is a project that examines this question by documenting the people of Ukraine who found themselves fleeing their homes due to the war, and the objects they hold dear in this journey.
The ongoing war in Ukraine has already caused millions of people to lose their homes and changed their lives completely. According to UN and IOM, over 8 millions of people are internally displaced in Ukraine and almost 8 million registered as refugees in Europe alone.
While this situation develops for more than a year now, the global media audience is becoming indifferent and not as reactive as in the beginning. While people affected by this war still suffer – both on the outside and on the inside.
Israeli multimedia social-artist Rom Barnea and his team had documented over 80 women, children and men who found shelter in Poland and Israel.
Belongings was premiered in an interactive, performative exhibition in Old Jaffa, Israel in late 2022 and is set to be presented in various locations in 2023.
Amongst hypermedia, graphs and reports, Belongings places individuals who have been displaced, and the objects they bear with them in the foreground.
Seeking out remains over ruins, Belongings constructs a vernacular perspective to the experience of migrating and belonging, through the minor possessions that have been carried on the exodus. Belongings frames the personal anchors thrown desperately into the open sea of displacement.
Belongings aims to amplify personal voices from within the current crisis, enabling refugees' innermost perspectives to aid us, the viewers, better understand their experience, current position, aspirations and inner conflicts; and to them – our participants – a way of expression. A platform to speak out.
About the artist:
Rom Barnea is Tel-Aviv based photographer, multidisciplinary cultural entrepreneur, social activist and curator that works with refugees, people with special needs; peace and climate activists.
Creative director at Pendulum creative agency.
Julia Maria Koszewska
Project producer – Julia is a sociologist (PhD) and human rights activist. She is also a cultural and digital diplomacy practitioner and Wikipedian. She brings synergy between the unexpected, translates tiny details to broader perspective, and ensures the documentation is always precise and research best made.
Writing partner – Natalka is a Ukrainian artist currently based in Warsaw.
Photographer, journalist, curator, cultural animator.
Careful listener and attentive observer, using culture to build bridges among different people and cultures. Being a migrant herself she creates projects that give others the opportunity of smooth integration into Polish society.
Writing partner – Tasha Karlyuka was born and raised in Kyiv, where she graduated from university and then graduate school in psychology. She divided her time between Tel-Aviv and Kyiv, but fled with her family back to Israel after Russia attacked Ukraine in February. She works as a journalist, screenwriter, and writer.