I would like to continue to take photographs of direct provision hostels in Ireland.
There are approximately 50 more hostels to visit. The hostels are spread all over the country.
I would use the funds for the travel and accommodation costs.
I need your help to be able to continue with the project.
Asylum archive is directly concerned with the reality and trauma of life as an asylum seeker. This project is based on my personal experience of being an asylum seeker and living in direct provision hostels. It originally started as a coping mechanism while seeking political asylum in Ireland. I use contemporary art language in the form of social documentaries, videos, photography, found objects, and text.
I aim to collaborate with asylum seekers, artists, cultural workers, sociologists, human rights workers, social activists, theorists, immigration lawyers, in the process of creating a platform that deals with questions like exile and asylum, displacement, war traumas, transnational migration, economic migration and immigration policy.
The asylum system functions as a closed and confined space far from the rest of society. It is the other, the outside, and a ghetto. The direct provision hostels and their residents don’t seem to have physicality. The rest of society is not to be concerned with their existence. Asylum archive is taking visual samples of this reality.
I will reveal different issues including institutional abuse, poverty, social exclusion, racism, mental health issues, etc.
I am researching the possibility of creating a site-specific space within one of the closed direct provision hostels. The idea is that the archive will be available for a permanent rather than a temporary period of time. The archive will have a vital visual informative and educational perspective. This is to help to establish better relations and understanding around asylum issues.
In the book ‘Discipline and Punish’ published in 1975, Michael Foucault describes that the disciplinary punishment gives "professionals" (psychologists, programme facilitators, parole officers, etc.) power over the prisoner, most notably in that the prisoner's length of stay depends on the professionals' judgment. Foucault compares modern society with Jeremy Bentham's "Panopticon" design for prisons where a single guard can watch over many prisoners while the guard remains unseen.
The similarity of the historic suffering of the women in the Magdalene laundries echo’s the incarceration and exclusion that asylum seekers experience in Ireland.
Thank you for taking the time to read this, and any help you can give is greatly appreciated.