Public opinion on this ever- evolving shantytown and its inhabitants is polarised: to some a threatening swarm seeking entry to our already overstretched island-nation, to others a shameful symbol of our failed foreign policy. Amid such debate, it is easy to lose sight of the tens of thousands of individuals who have found themselves in limbo in Calais, each with their own story and reasons for wanting to reach Britain.
Call me by my name: stories from Calais and beyond is a ground-breaking multimedia exhibition, taking place in a momentous month that sees both the EU referendum and Refugee Week. It explores the complexity and human stories behind the current migration crisis, with a particular focus on the Calais camp.
The exhibition features compelling works by established and emerging artists, refugees, camp residents and volunteers. These include a powerful new installation by award-winning Danish artist Nikolaj Larsen, street art from Stik, drawings of the camp by illustrator Nick Ellwood, graffiti, art and photography by camp residents, and an installation of lifejackets embedded with the stories of their wearers. It will serve as a forum for a range of discussions, film screenings and performances, including a poetry evening hosted by Michael Rosen. There will also be an opportunity for visitors to leave their responses, which will become part of an art piece by artist-in-residence, Cedoux Kadima.
The Migration Museum Project would like to thank the following donors for their generous grants and support, without which we would not have been able to stage this exhibition: Londonewcastle, Arts Council England, ESRC, Open University, COMPAS and all of the generous contributors to our crowdfunding campaign.