Refugees on “home”
Exhibition “What is Home?” on Oslo’s Peace Wall sees through the eyes of refugee children
What is a home? A home can be a place, but it can also be a feeling. A new photography exhibition by National Geographic and the Nobel Peace Center showcases images taken by young refugees and young people from Norway and Greece that portray their own notions of home.
Over the course of six months in 2017, young refugees and youth living in Norway and Greece participated in four National Geographic Photo Camps in the Norwegian cities of Oslo, Bergen, and Trondheim, and in Athens, Greece. National Geographic Photo Camp is a program that teaches young people from underserved communities, in cluding at-risk and refugee teens, how to use photography to tell their own stories and explore the world around them. Mentored by renowned National Geographic photographers, these young people explored each other’s cultures and the meaning of home, with the goal of creating increased understanding and developing deep connections with others through photography as a universal language.
“National Geographic Photo Camp aims to inspire a new generation of storytellers, as well as the members of the community who view their work. The ‘What is Home?’ exhibition celebrates this wonderful program and provides new audiences with the opportunity to view the powerful work of these young people and experience their stories through photography,” says Kaitlin Yarnall, vice president of media innovation at the National Geographic Society.
“It has been fantastic to work with a renowned and inspiring storytelling institution like National Geographic on a project that is empowering young people and inspiring us all to think in new ways. The work of these talented, young photographers shows us that everybody needs to feel at home, although our concept of home can be very different,” adds Liv Tørres, director at the Nobel Peace Center.
Together with photos taken by National Geographic photographers Lynn Johnson, Andrea Bruce, Pete Muller, and Marcus Bleasdale, the work from the young photographers is showcased in the “What is Home?” exhibition displayed on the Peace Wall outside the Nobel Peace Center. The exhibition will run through September 2018.
The Peace Wall is the building fence hiding the construction site for the new National Museum that is being erected in Oslo and is visited by thousands of people every day. It was turned into an arena for contemporary art in 2015 as an initiative of the Nobel Peace Center in cooperation with the Norwegian Directorate of Public Construction and Property (Statsbygg).
The National Geographic Society is a nonprofit in the fields of exploration, scientific research, storytelling, and education. The society aspires to create a community of change, advancing key insights about the planet and probing pressing scientific questions, while ensuring that the next generation is armed with geographic knowledge and global understanding. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.org.
The Nobel Peace Center is the museum about the Nobel Peace Prize. The center presents the Peace Prize laureates and their work, and tells the story of Alfred Nobel and the Peace Prize. Through permanent and temporary exhibitions, guided tours, various events, and family activities, the Center fosters reflection and engagement on topics related to war, peace, and conflict resolution. Each year, close to 250,000 people visit the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo.
This article originally appeared in the May 18, 2018, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.