For our dis/placed exhibition in 2015 we co-commissioned (with the V&A) Nowhere Is Home by the Syrian-German artist Manaf Halbouni.
A car loaded with personal possessions is turned into a living space – an impossible home for a “modern nomad unable to belong and grow roots”.
This personal yet universal piece by Manaf Halbouni speaks of his transient life in exile from Damascus. It also stands as a moving testament to loss, resilience and hope for over 50 million displaced people across the world, who are often forced to hastily pack a few cherished belongings onto a car before escaping war, natural disaster or conflict.
Nowhere Is Home was located at the Southbank Centre from 16-21 June (as an outdoor installation linked to the dis/placed show), and at the V&A’s Friday Late event on 26th June. From 22 – 25 June, the car was driven around London as an interactive installation, generating public engagement with issues relating to global displacement.
The work was originally commissioned for the exhibition ‘Dispossessed’ at the Venice Biennale by Wroclaw with Dredesn and Lviv.
Film by Isla Gordon-Crozier
In 2017 Manaf created Monument in Dresden. The installation refers to the current situation in Syria. The image of the busses in front of the Frauenkirche establishes a link between the situation of the people of the Middle East and Europe: the suffering and the unspeakable losses, but also the hope of reconstruction and peace.