EMERGENCY ROOM HANOI - 2011 - University of Fine Art
EMERGENCY: DARFURIAN WOMEN ARE BEING RAPED WHEN THEY COLLECT FIREWOOD
An estimated 250,000 Darfurian people live in refugee camps in Chad. Every day the women have to leave the relative safety of the camps to go out and collect firewood for cooking, and this often results in rape and torture. The men stay in the camps because if they leave they risk getting killed. The horror that these women face on a daily basis is almost unimaginable.
In an effort to help, an organization called Chad Solaire works hard to distribute solar cookers to all the families in the refugee camps. By using the solar cookers, the need for wood is much less and therefore provides more safety for the women. Furthermore it is much less time consuming as the sun does the work, which frees up valuable time for the women to do other activities. In the Emergency Room in Hanoi I make a work including one of these solar cookers and I had the great honor of presenting my work to HRH Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark.
The work consisted of three drawings of Darfurian women collecting firewood, placed within a real solar cooker.
It was my goal to raise awareness, not only about the horrific rapes, but also the big difference the solar cookers can make. Besides helping the refugees within the camps, the distribution of solar cookers also result in less violence. Wood is sparse, and by using the solar cookers, the refugees do not have to get in conflict with the local people in Chad because of the need for wood.
I am currently collaborating with Chad Solaire with the goal to raise enough money for a new solar cooker center. There are 14 refugee camps in Chad at this moment, and three of those have their own solar cooker center, where the cookers are made and the women participate in work shops to learn how to use them. We hope to raise funds to build center number four as soon as possible.
Presentation of the solar cooker project.
Because of the many reporters who were present, several articles mentioned the solar cookers afterwards.
An estimated 250,000 Darfurian people live in refugee camps in Chad, and the women face rape and torture when they have to leave the camps to collect wood.
EMERGENCY: NO GAY RIGHTS IN RUSSIA
On November 30, 2011, the Russian government was going to vote on a law which proposed to make it illegal to mention gay people in books or articles or to mention gay people in public.
From the front.
It was an honor to present my work to HRH Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark.
EMERGENCY: USA PLANNING TO USE PENETRATOR BOMBS IN IRAN
The US military purchased 8 Massive Ordnance Penetrator bombs, which they plan to use in Iran. I made a drawing of the bomb and attached to the drawing was a 61 metres long red string indicating how much solid concrete this weapon can penetrate before detonating.
The drawing attached to the wall.
The red string continuing out of the exhibition space.
And ending far away.
EMERGENCY: GOVERNMENTS CONTROLLING PROTESTS
During our show in Hanoi, it was reported that the US government had given several million dollars to the mayors and the police of New York to stop the Occupy movement at all costs. Inspired by how many of the Occupy followers used the Guy Fawkes mask, I made this work to illustrate the way the protests were being controlled.
EMERGENCY: OIL SPILL DESTROYING NATURE
After the horrific BP oil spill, the responsible directors claimed that the situation was under control.
New estimates show the undersea well has spilled between 17 and 39 million gallons. These estimates dwarf those of BP, who claimed the spill had only released 11 million gallons to date, and mean that the Gulf leak is far bigger than Exxon Valdez, making it the worst spill in American history.
The National Wildlife Federation reports that already more than 150 threatened or endangered sea turtles are dead. And 316 sea birds, mostly brown pelicans and northern gannets, have been found dead along the Gulf Coast as a result of the spreading oil.
EMERGENCY: SUPPRESSING LAW PROPOSAL IN SAUDI ARABIA
During our show a new law was proposed in Saudi Arabia which would force women with beautiful eyes to cover them up. Women in Saudi Arabia already have to wear a long black cloak, called an abaya, cover their hair and, in some regions, conceal their faces while in public. If they do not, they face punishment including fines and public beatings.
Unfortunately this work was stopped by the censorship comitee in Hanoi and therefore I could not exhibit the work in the Emergency Room.
EMERGENCY: CHILDREN BEING TORTURED IN SYRIA
The Saudi-owned newspaper, Asharq Al-Awsat, reported in October 2011 that 186 children have been killed since the outbreak of the Syrian revolution on March 15. The youngest Syrian child killed by the Army was only two months old. The Egyptian weekly Al-Ahram reported in its English edition that "there are dozens of video footage of bodies of children from Deraa, Homs, Latakia and other Syrian areas showing severe signs of torture, pulled-out nails, gorged eyes and severed limbs." Despite international pressure, the Syrian regime does not hesitate to describe these young and innocent victims as "terrorist infiltrators."
GALLERY FROM THE EMERGENCY ROOM IN HANOI