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Fear or Freedom? Exhibition 

Fear or Freedom?  Exhibition

Thurs 18 to Wednesday 24 Jan 2024,  10am to 4pm

Exhibition space outside Bewick Hall, Level 2, Newcastle City Library


Skimstone Arts presents this powerful exhibition consisting of fragments of real stories, poems, songs, photographs, drawings and lyrics that have been contributed by artists, photographers, musicians and young people in the North East of England. Contributors and collaborators include those with lived experience of war and oppression, from Bosnia, Ukraine, Kurdistan Iraq, Guatemala, Poland, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Iran, with additional research from Holocaust survivors.


Skimstone Arts worked with the above diversity of people in a series of story sharing, song writing, recording, creative and reflective sessions, including our regular Freeflow Creativity Cafe and Youth Music project alongside individual interviews and recorded conversations. They explore the national Holocaust Memorial Day Events 2024 theme - Fragility of Freedom.


Supported by Fine Art Department at Newcastle University, Fear or Freedom? exhibition was  collaboratively created by connecting together how war, oppression, genocide and conflict erodes our freedoms, and how humanity is forever affected, whatever country or era of time. Torn fragments represent how our identities, loved ones, being human, respect and closure for those who have died and we have lost, our natural world can all be taken away. How do we find forgiveness and new freedoms ? 


Fear or Freedom? considers our own fragility of freedom and asks us to consider; How does ‘what’s happening over there’ in war torn parts of our planet affect how we treat each other and our world?  How can we support others to find a new freedom of hope, healing and peace?


Special thanks to all contributors and collaborators including; Ako Ismail, Anxhela Mecja, Arthur Vane, Chris Jamieson, Clare Matthews, Debra Wilson, Mr Mulualem Degu, Edyta Czarnecka, Ethan Thompson, Keith Hill, Irene Mujacic Carlton, Lya Vollering, Martin Heslop, Nataliia Petryk, Nicole David, Peter Saaremets, Ouseman Abdoulay, Rae Dixon, Rafael Bagott, Shaho Omar, Verity Alderman, and to Theresa Easton - Fine Art Lecturer at Newcastle University working with Claire Webster Saaremets - Artistic Director of Skimstone Arts.


Fear or Freedom? was officially opened on Thursday 18 January at 12.30pm by Smajo Beso OBE, found er of Bosnian Genocide Educational Trust

"Thank you for bringing individual voices and our shared humanness and hope amongst people’s trauma and pain." Audience Feedback  

"Very moving exhibition. Words can’t express how sad this is. What is wrong with this world we live in." Audience Feedback 


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