A photographic essay representing the lives of refugees in a small market town in England.
STATUS: Photography completed. Exhibition at Stamford Arts Centre 18th October 2022
Whilst working for a press organisation I was privileged to photograph a number of Ukrainian families who had fled their home country following the invasion by Russia.
I was immediately struck by their overwhelming strength and dignity – but was not convinced this was being fully articulated in the press which seemed to concentrate Nationally on statistics and images from Ukraine itself.
Having spoken with a number of host families, and then again with a number of refugees themselves, it became clear that there are two sides to the story that need to be told. On the one hand is the public face of the families going about daily lives in a small market town and surrounding villages and finding peace as best they can – and yet the chaos they have left behind never really leaves them.
After further talks and taking advice from the ever helpful Stamford Diversity Group the details of the project evolved over time resulting in six families being photographed, each in two different settings – one being the “moment of peace” that they find locally – the other being the “moment of reflection” as they reflect on the lives they have left behind.
I should like to thank the families who placed their trust in me to accurately and fairly represent them – and I hope that the exhibition can help in some small way help the local community to gain a better understanding of the lives of our strong, dignified and proud visitors from Ukraine.
Credit also to Stamford Fairtrade, Rutland Climate Action, and everyone else who has either helped with guidance during the project or been part of the “One World Week Exhibition” in Stamford which has this year had the theme of refugees.