Refugee Art Exhibition
A fundraiser supporting refugees along their journey
Presented by Kayra Martinez “Love Without Boarders - For Refugees in Need”
This exhibit consists entirely of artwork created by refugees stranded in Greece due to the closure of the borders within the European Union. The paintings were produced by children, teens, and adults residing at various refugee camps in Greece (including Nea Kavala, Elliniko, Ritsona, and Thriva) as well as those residing in housing communities. A few of the artists are refugees originally met in Greece, but who have now been accepted for asylum in other European countries, and are now residing in those countries. The artists are primarily from Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and Pakistan.
Kayra Martinez, the founder of Love Without Borders, has provided a forum for the refugees to express themselves through their art. Ms. Martinez offers art classes to residents from Nea Kavala camp in her home nearby. She provides art supplies for a children’s art class taught by a refugee woman in Thiva camp. She meets with and accepts art from residents of refugee camps throughout Greece and gives them materials so they can continue producing art. She maintains contacts and relationships with refugee artists who have since left Greece and reunited with family.
This exhibit stands as a powerful testament to the transformative power of art. Using limited materials, the works on display here communicate the artists’ experiences, inner lives - perhaps a longing for or remembrance of normalcy - and wishes for a better future. “The children are at their happiest when they can draw and paint. It helps them work through their trauma while having some fun painting.” It also gives us a window into the artists’ lives - their sufferings and hopes - while caught up in what seems to be an endless crisis.
The exhibition has been shown in several cities throughout the US, Canada, South Korea, the Philippines, and across Europe. They hope that the vicarious experience gained from viewing these paintings may inspire each of us to help refugees in our own way.
For more information about Kayra Martinez and Love Without Borders visit www.lovewithoutborders4refugees.com or follow Love Without Borders - For Refugees In Need and Nea Kavala - Art Without Borders on Facebook.