The things we leave behind

24 Jan – 3 Feb 2018

Teresa Albor & Lais Pontes

A collaborative show about migration curated by Clara Rocha and Catalina Bunge.

This interactive exhibition is part of the process focussed work artists Teresa Albor and Lais Pontes have been doing for close to two years, examining the issues inherent in migration. For this show, they will focus on migration and women.

The exhibition will feature photography, sound pieces, drawings, writing, artefacts and performance all arising from the thoughtful consideration of a collection of objects left behind by people who have had to flee their homes to survive. The artists have used these objects, which were left in a transition camp in Serbia and on the shores of the island of Lesbos in Greece, to start conversations about migration and survival. The participants range from asylum seekers based in London, to students in Afghanistan—and include a whole host of UK based students and professionals from all walks of life.

Pontes and Albor ask their participants to consider these objects: Who owned them? Why were they left behind? What value did they have, moreover, do they have now?

By asking people to adopt an object, integrate it into their lives, and note their feelings and observations, the artists are asking us to consider how and why we value objects, through embedding them with meanings and relating them to our own experience.

The most recent iteration of this project involves asking women based in London to integrate an object presumed left behind by a woman into their homes and lives. They are subsequently asked to write a letter to an imagined woman who once owned the object.

In addition to the exhibition, there will be a performance and several workshops using the objects allowing the public to be more involved in the project. Details of these events will be listed on this website.

The exhibition gives visitors an opportunity to ask their own questions about migration—one of the most complex and relevant issues facing us at a time when we are asking questions about national identity.