I was interested to uncover what refuge means to different people, and what forms it takes. In this film we find out what refuge means for some of us, and find that these are universal. Accompanying the film is a written Refuge Manifesto, created in the final session of Art House.
THE REFUGE MANIFESTO
We all have a right to refuge.
We have the right to be safe, both externally and internally
We have the right to a space,
a quiet place,
a break from the chaos.
Refuge is essential,
Refuge is the light,
Refuge is peace,
Refuge is being listened to,
Refuge is sharing experiences,
Refuge is compassion.
This poem was written by Bev Samler, a South African printmaker and artist who was involved in the project.
Ammoniteme by Bev Samler
I return from whence I came – a foetal ammonite
Carapace protection with iron ribs and empty chambers
Would I venture out to be abused?
I am a hollow tube scoured by acid tongues
and flinty fists
I am nothing; worthless;
I have no mind, no substance, no standing
Reduced to calcified flakes – and yet;
I rise a warrior for I am a woman,
Lifted in strength by wings of amazons
Of long ago
Gone before but now reclaimed,
I hold a shield and sword to defend myself,
And so on to Valhalla.