SOAS University of London

Department of Development Studies

Creativity in Development: using the creative arts in challenging situations

Miriam Nabarro, Besa Berberi and Bobby Lloyd

Date: 2 March 2016Time: 2:00 PM

Finishes: 2 March 2016Time: 3:00 PM

Venue: 30 Russell Square Room: 102

Type of Event: Seminar

This seminar brings together three artists, who all have experience of working with the creative arts with marginalised communities in challenging situations in development and emergency settings. They will discuss the role that art-making can have in challenging perceived identities, developing community relationships and in overcoming difficult events, as well as considering the roles of art as therapy, consciousness-raising, activism, resilience, and peace building, among others. They will be drawing on their experiences from Kosovo, Bosnia, DRC, Sudan, Eritrea and most recently, in the camps in Calais and Dunkirk.

Besa Berberi, a refugee from Kosova, trained as Opera singer in Zagreb University, Croatia and Trinity College, London, and worked at the Globe Theatre while living in London. She currently works as a Assistant Professor, dividing her time between University "Haxhi Zeka" Peje, Kosovo and University "Hasan Prishtina" Prishtina, Kosovo. She worked extensively with Kosovars displaced to Albania and Rotherham during the crisis in 1999, and later in the UK with Kosovan communities running a music school for  children ("Yjet") to keep their cultural heritage present. As a singer she has performed all over the world, and as a musicologist, is currently researching the role of lullabies in Albanian culture.

Bobby Lloyd is a visual artist, HCPC registered art therapist, clinical supervisor, lecturer and writer. She teaches on the Art Therapy Northern Programme in Sheffield and is Honorary Fellow of the Institute for Health and Human Development at University of East London (UEL). Her work has taken her to countries of political conflict and social upheaval over two decades. She developed the idea of Portable Studio with Debra Kalmanowitz in the 1990’s in response to their work in the former Yugoslavia, under Art Therapy Initiative (ATI). She is Chair of the charity Art Refuge UK and strategic lead in Calais. As a visual artist, Bobby’s enquiry explores places, landscapes and communities in the throes of disruption/contestation, in order to engage with new/other/imagined possibilities across art media, including photography, found objects, film, text and installation. With artist Sally Labern she is co-lead artist of the drawing shed, a contemporary arts organisation that bridges on and off two housing estates in East London and uses a series of mobile studios as platforms for the work.

Miriam Nabarro is an artist, educator and humanitarian worker, working in theatre design, photography and printmaking with a particular practice-led interest in conflict, development and the creative arts. She is Artist in Residence in the Department of Development Studies, SOAS, where she exhibited an exhibition of photos dealing with loss and memory Damnation of Memory: the destruction of the National Library, Sarajevo in 2014. Believing that theatre, art and music have the unique possibility of communicating meaningfully to wide and diverse audiences beyond traditional developmental approaches, her work has taken her to Kosovo, Georgia, Eritrea, DRC, Sudan, Iran and central Australia where she has run projects for (i)NGOs and the British Council, and created performances, exhibitions and installations in many settings and for many different communities of all ages and background. Current projects include Tales from the MP3, Black and The Broke n Beat with 20 Stories High, a Liverpool based theatre company working with young people about contemporary issues.

Organiser: Dr Anna Lindley

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Contact Tel: 0207 898 4690