THE BALKAN WARS: FAR FROM HOMELAND (1997-2000)1997-2000
This collection includes drawings and paintings by refugee children of the 1997 Bosnia-Herzegovina conflict who were sheltered in the Children’s Village, the former summer palace of the Swedish royal family situated in Maraska on the Dalmation coast. LIGCA collaborated with BritAID, a UK charity set up by LIGCA Trustee Caroline Kennedy, to provide medical care and education to victims of the conflict. The art produced by the residents of the Children’s Village led to Homelandlessness, an exhibition opened by former BBC war correspondent and Member of Parliament, Martin Bell.
Additional drawings by Albanian refugees of the later conflict in Kosovo led to Far from Homeland, a poignant plea for peace in the former Yugoslavia. Artwork from these collections and two others: Sand Colours by North African Sahrawi refugees and Holding Hands by children living in Lavrion, a Kurdish refugee camp in Greece, were later amalgamated to create this artistic tour de force reflecting the suffering longings of children displaced from their homes due to political upheavals.
In 2000, at the initiative of LIGCA’s Founding Director Amy Bartow Melia, Far from Homeland was presented for exhibition at the UN Headquarters in New York City. The First Lady, Hillary Clinton, provided a video introduction. The exhibition subsequently toured venues throughout the USA.