Private view Thursday 15th, 7.30 to 9.30:
Screening of ‘War in the Desert’ 1988 BBC film presented by Royal African Society’s director Richard Dowden
Redah Boudbagh Trio: Arab-Andalouse music from the Maghreb.
Poetry reading from Settled Wanderers, by Sam Berkson & Mohamed Suleiman Labat and Renny Jackson will perform ‘Free Western Sahara’
RSVP essential at email@example.com
This autumn, London-based arts and human rights charity Sandblast is organising a series of multi-media events to remind the British public and politicians about the ongoing 40 years-long plight of the indigenous Saharawis from “Africa’s Last Colony”: Western Sahara. This former Spanish colony was forcefully occupied by Morocco at the end of 1975, provoking mass exodus into harsh refugee camps in Algeria and denying the Saharawis their self-determination dreams.
Arts Council-funded “Africa’s Last Colony” will launch with 40-year retrospective photo and film exhibition at Hundred Years Gallery as part of the East London Photomonth Festival 2015.
UK-based photographers representing a wide range of styles and themes, from pinhole to reconstructed images, taken from 1976 up to the present, will be featured alongside the screening of films by UK filmmakers and presenters, including Michael Palin and Simon Reeve, who have contributed to documenting this under reported story over the past four decades. Researchers, activists and artists will also share their views on different aspects of the conflict, including representatives of Saharawi youth organisations Adala UK and Saharawi Voice.
“Our experiences in Tindouf will never be forgotten and I was enormously impressed by what we saw of the life of the Saharawis in exile. I very much hope for a fair and just outcome for the Saharawis. Your consistent and persistent refusal to be ignored is admirable and inspirational” (Michael Palin)
UK Photographers in exhibition on Western Sahara: Claudia Adeath, Matt Aslett, Emma Brown, Andy Coules, Anna Evans-Freke, Steve Franck, Vanessa Galbraith, Alan Gignoux, Carolina Graterol, Robert Griffin, Ingrid Guyon, Ed Harriman, Nilu Izadi, Tomasz Laczny, Olivia Mann, Ali Meziane, Nevil Mountford, Danielle Smith, John Tordai, Simon Thorpe, Quintina Valero. Saharawi artists: photography by Omar Dih, Najla Mohamed, Hajtna Did; calligraphy by Mohamed Suleiman, drawings by Saharawi children courtesy of Enfants Refugés du Monde.
All events are free of charge. Full program here
To culminate two ticketed events will be hosted at the Bolivar Hall, the cultural centre of the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela:
On Oct 30th Sandblast will screen the English premiere of “Life is Waiting: Referendum and Resistance in Western Sahara” (7.30pm,£10/£12). This cutting-edge film highlights the youth perspective on the conflict and will be followed by a panel discussion with special guests such as journalist Sean Williams and Venezuelan ambassador to France Hector Mujica, who has supported the Saharawi cause for many years.
On Nov 7th London’s leading artistic talents who have been to the camps, Luzmira Zerpa and Family Atlantica (Afro-Latin), Grupo Lokito (Cuban-Congolese), Pia de Keyser (singer songwriter) and Sam Berkson (spoken word), will perform in a concert for the Saharawis.
For info & tickets, please visit www.sandblast-arts.org or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All events will be highlighting Sandblast’s work in the Saharawi refugee camps through projects Studio-Live and Run the Sahara.
This page is under development, it will updated with full events information shortly.
Hundred Years Gallery and ‘Africa’s Last Colony’ are featured in The Culture Trip list of Hackney’s 10 Hip Galleries