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Art. What is it good for?

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home the and and
the and he and thank you very much for having me
here at Republic her her material having an
amazing time I certainly am and am here today to talk to you about arts and war but before I begin my talk I want to kind of gage your opinion about something and new show you some and pictures on the screen behind me and I want you to raise your hands if you think that these pictures show a basic human need and made so this is
the 1st picture this this humanitarian aid in the form of food so how many people here think that food is a basic need for humanity and high is 1 that's and it doesn't
matter how they're still allows users and I'd hate the next picture is a picture that displays shelter so how many
people here think that shelter is essentially a basic need for a for humanity delisting that's not raising their hand out of her who where the state of an answer and the picture
here in this picture for me illustrates water how many people here think that water is a basic need I pay the final pitch said I'd like you to tell me whether you think this is a basic need is and this is a
picture of of young children down OK to already and young people dancing and this to me represents arts and creativity how many people here think that this is a basic need along with the things that is to the I k so that's quite that's quite an interesting response I didn't quite expect quite as many people to raise their hands what remains also creativity is absolutely a basic need and this prevents quite a lot of challenges for me in the work that I do and I get asked this
question a lot why arts why are not not age and this is
usually followed by without aid people will die and my 1st response to this is why do I have to choose why do I have to choose between food and water but why do I have to choose between arts and the things that I talked about question came about when I was speaking to a big charity in the UK who was shipping out at sea walls zones and I asked them whether they would be able to take the music equipment so that we could make a music studio in a war zone and they basically laughter me out of the room and they said this is ridiculous you know people will die if we don't take this as this is a long time ago and so OK maybe that would apply and maybe I'm naive maybe music doesn't have the power that I think it does and so I carried on working in the field of conflicts across the world I really discovered that creativity in theater culture is essential to life and so I wanna show you that today and see if I can convince people here that as well and I can I wanna start
with these quotes and it says but culture was a luxury then why suffer for it if it which revealed them why prosecuted and it was harmless and why die for it and this is for a core from a prince in the Netherlands and his connected to something
good prince clouds and foundation and for me this kind of provides a good context for the talk today festival if
culturing creativity wasn't so powerful then why would the 1st people to be taken and tortured under a dictatorship the the artists
yeah this is a photograph of a friend of mine were found who was a singer in the Egyptian revolution so he was a senior in entire square and shortly after the revolution he was taken and tortured in the Egyptian Museum by the by the military and for me this is 1 man and a guitar the y is his music so powerful they warrants the military to go and torture him yeah and to give you a bit of context a little bit about me and I'm not necessary from Warsaw learned from this place this is a place called Burnley which is just next to Manchester and in the UK is a
very small town and where people don't generally generally leave people don't look outwards to the world for inspiration so I never really thought I would have the opportunity to leave early but then music came into my life and for me my own personal journey music been really important in taking me out of the place that I probably wouldn't have left without it when I was 10 years old my parents bought me a guitar didn't really 1 but I like to play and that took my life in a completely different and direction a letter play guitar I was in bands I start a record label I made music events all across the world and I help me to get this understanding of how important music can be in transforming people's lives and me if nothing else creativity will take people on a journey I don't know what that journey is aware ends but it will definitely do that and famaey creativity is important because it can be made anywhere and by anybody the great thing about all what is that you don't need a lot of resources to make it happen this is a photograph of theater in the Congo the exceedance need your body with you making hip-hop you just need your voice so so it can be made anywhere on the most important arts the arts that
I enjoy the most is made by the people who need to make it it's urgent and I'm a co-director of an organization called in place of war and we worked with creativity in places of conflict across the world we've been doing this for the past 12 years of and we work with education we work with the creation of
spaces and the mobility of artists in war zones and we've been doing this in about 40 countries across the world the all work started with 1 question and that was do people make when bombs a jumping on their heads when we started by exploring the theater in places of conflict and asking 1st of all this theater happen the and if you then why people making this how what people making this and to cut a long story short this took many years and we found that in every time of conflict post-conflict on people are making the theater that it may change and may look different at different times of conflicts with always being produced so this kind of through
a question at me which was why is ought to so important that the most challenging times in people's lives on the still making it to they still feel they have to make it the so I wanna show you a few examples of different
artistic practice that I've seen across the world that for me manages to do something that was out spots wouldn't exist the M. the 1st place that I wanna show you is and Zimbabwe yeah and
OK so this is Adam and satirical news program called the Sunday the maze and these guys are actually embedded right now in the performing on Wednesday I think you should check it out and basically amazing because what they do with satire is quite incredible well just Zimbabwe for the 1st time I tried to have a conversation in a local bar with my friends about politics and it just was a no-go it was absolutely not spoken about people felt scared that they might be taken and tortured and all these things are very very much a reality in Zimbabwe what's amazing is diseased satirizes the government through the news program in a place where you can't speak about politics in a bar they produce and his program on DVDs and distribute them across the townships in stream that program online and they reach 9 million people in Zimbabwe with this program the now people from Europe this might seem quite normal to produce this kind of program but believe me is completely unique and from 8 3 some higher it opens up a
space in Zimbabwe where people can question the government they can question what's happening they can profit they can satirize so for me this is really really powerful yeah these guys these guys
also and creates a festival push opera festival and again they have a festival here of hip-hop and spoken word in a
place we can't talk about politics in a bar you can stand on stage and you can the politicized through here often spoken words last year I went to see the festival was amazing is performed and the festival site was in front of the Sun EPF this is Mugabe's party inference of that building in the center of Ferrari and sunbathing is performed and for me it was 1 of the most political acts that I've ever seen thousands of people with their watching comedians satirize Robin
regarding nobody got arrested and this to me is a very unique things that shows the power of satire in this space talking about space which I think is really important in terms of making transformation transformation within communities this is a space called ofour reggae and is based in the favelas in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil after reading started out as a community needs played paper in a place that is very challenging in terms of gang-related violence and pretty much was a no-go area this this community newspaper
evolved into a multifaceted creative space where young people can go in and lend drama Ireland downslide land how to produce music and this space engages people in positive activity that they otherwise would not be able to be involved in so again this is another space that I really love this is putting out for us this is based in practice in Venezuela in a very dangerous ghetto few health is the creative space that made out of converted shipping containers at every week 500 young people access this space and come out of the violence that surrounds them and engaging creative activity so without a space like this there would be no other option for young people in this neighborhood again sticking with
Venezuela this is a photograph of an all-pass called else's demo else's down reason pasta where young people can engage and learn classical instruments and across across the country when I
visited and Venezuela 1 of the most surprising kind of consequences of this orchestra manifested itself when I talked to a young boy the the percussionist in orchestra and went to his house and he was playing his depression and he was amazing and he said to me every day I have to travel from school so that we can rehearsal and I travel across the ghetto of developed and it's very very dangerous to me every day I risk my life to do this but as soon as I sit down and as soon as I play my Christian I state it takes me out of the reality of my everyday life and for him is question was everything for him he gave him this this alternative to the reality to the dangerous and challenging reality that he lives this is another space this is the injury Lanka and in a political Batticaloa and this is called the butterfly piece garden and this was set during the time of civil unrest in Sri
Lanka this space is a walled garden and within a young people can just be young people and they can be creative and they can make our and outside the the kind of walls of this garden people literally killing each other with a full blown war happening but this was a safe space for children could go and again SK and create talking about kind of user
and aspects of how can be powerful this is a guy was Smokey and he's from Burkina Faso's smoke is there a hip-hop artist 1st Lucky's music he recorded an album that again questioned the government that the album the intention was all about a better Burkina Faso's his album was quite political and very strong and it galvanize young people and brought them onto the street so that they themselves could put the political and revolt against the government because of the power of his album the government bond his studio and have sex all the country and again when we think about what as being maybe this kind of stuff thing that people do for entertainment this was a very real thing that the government felt threatened by so for me this is very powerful and
again talking about running sound diet so it's about before he was performing in terrorist where when the government was overthrown the
great thing about what Romney did was he kept people in a situation where they might have been protesting for days for weeks of some people even lived in Tahrir Square for many months and his music galvanize people and kept the there and perhaps the motivated for this time this is a photograph from
1 of my favorite cities in the world this is a photograph from metagene in Colombia and managing many of you may know has been troubles for decades and from knocker related violence is the city where Pablo Escobar is from and was very until very recently the major producer and distributor of the troop OK young people in the city of metagene has and restricted options in their life most young people from the poor neighborhoods would be inter cartels a life expectancy of young people in metagene was 21 years old between the end of 1987 and 2000 14 thousand
younger boys were murdered in the city of managing in managing the young people decided they wanted to create an alternative to this 1 option this 1 choice that they had which was to go into a drug cartel so they started at hip-hop movement they were inspired by hip-hop in New York in the 19 eighties and bands like Public Enemy and it started out with and then cardboard boxes
practicing break something moves and then people started to wrap across the city the consequences of this for huge in terms of positive impacts today there are 2 thousand 500 pop act in the city and when I went there the 1st time this is the thing that changed my mind about how important be this
quote is is that have popped and the code Leipoa and he said if it wasn't for him part I would be dead the pop gave me another option in life and for that I'm truly thankful so that's the 1 thing that without being able to make it part they would literally have died yeah
it becomes so important in the city of metagene that there are now hip-hop schools in every single kimono or neighborhood across the city where people engage and learn all the 5 forms of hip-hop the M.
the so I won't have all of these different purposes but 1 of the things I've seen having visited lots of war zones in lots of places that suffer from conflict is the role of women is often really marginalized in these contexts of women often fulfill really traditional roles book I'm seeing are not playing a role in terms of empowerment of women across some of the places that we were this is an artist called our African woman arise and again she's from Zimbabwe from a township will market October In her township not only are women very
marginalized but they suffer from things like domestic violence rates and so on and these things are not talked about the kind of happen under the surface Our is 22 years old and she's the 1st female hip-hop artist from the city and through her music she speaks out against these injustices in her Township and this is really powerful she's an amazing performer before me it does 2 things the 1st thing is it shows that women can have a different option from fulfilling the traditional role that is expected of them and secondly it brings to the surface of the issues that women face in the township every 1 of my final example is the kind of the power of OT is 1 of my favorite projects across the world that I've seen this is a picture and in Gulu in Uganda the places that suffered from conflict it's 1 of the kind of most challenging places and that I've seen this is an organization which the call themselves a hip-hop I agree business so this is 15 here pop artists and I have a farm and they make they produce for use on the farm and they sell this and the profit they make from the production of the food enables them to going to prison to do and deliver him hip-hop workshops with prisoners through their
work the prisoners that they work with generally don't re-offend so for me this is the power of hip-hop in a way to transform opportunities for those people the fallen themselves in prison and for me is an incredible example of a true social enterprise the the last thing that I want to talk about and I could talk forever about a million different examples but 1 of the most powerful things and that I've seen in my lifetime is the way in which digital technology has grown and changed but for me the power that it has with grassroots communities across the world this is a photograph of an organization called media ninja who were based in Brazil because to establish themselves very much by accident during the uprisings that started a few years ago in Brazil 1 guy just start documenting what was happening on his mobile phone he got arrested and this became viral across Brazil now and media platform the documents everything that's happening on the ground and they have this huge audience across Brazil what's what's really powerful about the creative way that they use digital technology is that they're able to tell an alternative narrative to that of the mainstream media and for me this is so powerful so they're able to document and tell the stories of the realities of what's happening on the ground which
often gets not mentioned in in mainstream media so there are some examples that
I've encountered across the world through the work that we do it in place of war and and
again I could talk about many more so maybe art has this incredible capacity to give people hope and it fulfills lots of different roles it can be politically can be escaping can be lots of different things but
everywhere we go we see it happening in being made and I think when people have hoped people can then start to make change this is a photograph of me that my define what we think a war zone or battlefield looks like but I think right now at this time we have seen 1 of the most fundamental changes in our lifetimes happening right now the me this idea of the battlefield is changing this is a picture of soldiers in the desert properly fighting the soldiers in the desert where the rules may be of slightly clearer than they are when now we have soldiers in all Apple soldiers
on our streets soldiers in all parks in cities right across the world that the me the biggest change that was being in our time is the changing nature of what awards of looks like I feel like war impact upon every single 1 of those and I feel like sometimes where soldiers but we don't have weapons things changed
fundamentally the and in
September the 11th 2009 when people flee planes into buildings and this chain continues to change today when we have people exploded making explosions across cities in our world the consequences of
war can be felt every single day with people fleeing from conflict and arriving in different countries trying to find a better life and often when they arrive somewhere else that is faced with a completely different conflicts the M. semi art is a way for us to counter the violence in the world and it's a wafers to
show solidarity for the 1 thing that we all have in common regardless of our religion regardless of our race regardless of our gender alters the way for us to show solidarity for humanity and this is really important yeah the people you've come to watch this talk I hope that if you didn't believe that are always imports in I heard have gone a little way to showing you how important certainly I think it is but I still don't think about you know if every person in this room supports as an artist in a war zone if every person in this room helped to share the stories of the most isolated people the counselor the narratives of the mainstream
media the if every person in this room supported their refugee communities then this would be a start we're living in a time of massive change and we need to be able to face our children and say that we all did something to help support those people who struggle because of the impact and consequences of conflicts I want ends with the quotes am and this is a quote from a friend of mine cos he walked from he's from Durban in South Africa and he says this and I think that this can be summarized the power of our he said can poetry change the world I said in poetry change the world what poetry can change of people and people can change the world thank you and some thank you thank you so much truth in Lao Cai let's see hands going up for questions we can take 1 or 2 may yeah I I have a couple here I show and them only moving stories so many possible impressions on how do you manage to take all those home and and keep all the dynamic and go at it I
guess it's because of that the people that we work with across the world we're working with the most incredible young people who have all that this drive and with this passion and to me some of the most brave people that I've ever encountered working in the most challenging context as of me and it always always inspired by what I see as so the work that we do and how we can support those people and tell their stories on a more global platform centimeters that the fire of the people we work we
give me the fire to take that forward and I often what we see when we go out into the field is it can be very challenging and can be very upsetting but for me is always that kind of resilience in people who are creating all of these are the gives me then that the kind of the the drive to kind of give that a bigger platform idea and just keep doing this which you to
each of the the has their like you can a feature sets which is expanding all doing so working across normal countries
and a lot of stuff that we do around creative entrepreneurialism around education witting anymore emotive context across the world and I think for me as much as we can support artists and creative people across the world on a which is the need for that we will continue to do that is great thank you so so much for being at
the thing can harm and hang out of the event the big makers face the hands and then maybe but for those of you who were too shy to hassle classes now finds them during the course of the day tomorrow maybe some points and stands and find out of the web more value work thanks so much for being here that have another big round of applause phase uh
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Metadaten

Formale Metadaten

Titel Art. What is it good for?
Serientitel re:publica 2016
Teil 93
Anzahl der Teile 188
Autor Daniel, Ruth
Lizenz CC-Namensnennung - Weitergabe unter gleichen Bedingungen 3.0 Deutschland:
Sie dürfen das Werk bzw. den Inhalt zu jedem legalen Zweck nutzen, verändern und in unveränderter oder veränderter Form vervielfältigen, verbreiten und öffentlich zugänglich machen, sofern Sie den Namen des Autors/Rechteinhabers in der von ihm festgelegten Weise nennen und das Werk bzw. diesen Inhalt auch in veränderter Form nur unter den Bedingungen dieser Lizenz weitergeben.
DOI 10.5446/20686
Herausgeber re:publica
Erscheinungsjahr 2016
Sprache Englisch

Inhaltliche Metadaten

Fachgebiet Informatik
Abstract A talk that explores the real power of art at different times of conflict showcasing examples of grassroots artistic movements from across the globe from Latin America to Sub-Saharan Africa.

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