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Syria Shorts: Portraits From Dystopia

The exhibition includes two short films about ordinary people in Syria and their struggle to survive, to love and to resist. These films have been produced by people in Syria who dare to continue to hope, to love, and to stay alive. Thanks to Syrian Peace Action Centre (SPACE) in Oslo who made it possible to show these films.

“A Day and a Button” (6:48) by Azza Al Hamwi
Shot with a hidden camera inside Damascus in 2014, the director explores the city's colors and rhythm in contrast to the countryside.

“Love during the siege” (15:35) by Matar Ismael
In this film you wil meet Um Wassim and her family in their daily struggle to continue to live and love under the siege south of Damascus.

Both films are produced by Bidayyat in Syria in 2015.

Bidayyat for Audiovisual Arts is a Syrian non-profit organization, launched in early 2013, to support and produce Syrian documentaries and short and experimental films, and to organize specialized training courses on documentary filmmaking.

Syrian Peace Action Centre (SPACE) is a non-profit association working to create spaces for informed discussions and critical reflections about Syria.

Still from "Love during the siege"

Film screening 19 February

This is Exile: Diaries of Child Refugees (56:00, 2015)
by director Mani Y. Benchelah

Venue: Kunstplass [10], 2nd floor Old City Hall (Teater museet), Nedre Slottsgate 1

Introduction by Margrete Bjørge Katanasho, PRESS – Redd Barna Youth
Conversation afterwards with Margrete Bjørge Katanasho (Press) and Murhaf Fares (Syrian Peace Action Centre SPACE)

The refugee crisis of 2015 was a wake-up call to many Europeans as to the fate of the millions of people fleeing the Syrian civil war, and more than anything the fate of the children. This Is Exile brings us face to face with these youngest of refugees.

The director follows a handful of kids through a year of exile, alone or with parents, in Lebanon or Switzerland, and in their own words and their own understanding of the situation we see the raw truth of how war affects them.

Without further narration the documentary quietly leads us through both the simplicity and complexity of what goes on in a child’s mind, and shows us both the hope and the hopelessness.

In a time where it seems so easy to forget the individual fates of refugees, This is Exile insists on reminding us.





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