invests in the power of image making to investigate real-life issues during escape from domestic abuse. Intersecting an art project with research topics, it curates textual and visual output from participative work with survivors and different publics to form exhibitions which disseminate findings and uncover emerging lines of research.
We get in and out, but you are staying there, at the beginning of your difficult path for change. We sometimes feel that we did not thank you enough for opening up and sharing your stories with us, despite the notion that we are a bridge for sharing them with the rest of the world.
This is our work, meaning it is as much yours as it is the research team’s. We felt it was another unfair happening in your lives that you could not be present in the public exhibitions, having your authorship recognised, collecting all the deserved compliments for your beautiful work.
We are not sure that you will all see this, and that you will have the chance to see the photographs of the interaction of our participative work with the public. In case you browse for some information you might arrive here. And then we want you to know that we haven’t forgotten you. We will go on remembering your faces, your voices, your feelings, and also the joy of doing art side by side.
Our connection is contained in the work. We will go on together.
Participant 3, Personal Idiosyncrasy, Blind contour portraits of others.
Participant 1, Personal Idiosyncrasy, Blind contour portraits of others.
Participant 2, Personal Idiosyncrasy, Blind contour portraits of others.
Participant 6, Personal Idiosyncrasy, Blind contour portraits of others.
A collaborative possibility in anonymised portraits emerged from the fact that blind contour, a typical exercise in art classes, verifies that each person’s drawings are very similar to each other, while informing very little on the particularities of the subject. Highly idiosyncratic, blind contour displays the first attribute of style, presenting an inner self-portrait as a draftsperson. While being showcased within portraits of others it also sums up the idea that each character is affected by her social relationships, reacting to an environment.
This image-text symbolises several significant aspects met during the project: the scope of “objects” to mean general concepts; the necessity of anonymity, which implies names’ redaction; the resilience of self-esteem that triggers a step forward to escape abuse. The design of the postcard was a gift from the designer to the project.
There was not one single case in this chapter where a wanted object was something never experienced by the participants. In fact, all wanted objects overlapped with lost ones, or previous experiences they wished to repeat.