Breaking the silence comes at a cost and requires courage and determination, and probably nobody breaks the silence without good cause. The reasons for speaking out are many. They vary from honouring oneself for having survived to causing a small ripple out there in the world, from fighting for justice and restoration to keeping safe. From trying to find a channel to express pent up creativity to simply surviving. Every voice or small act against abuse, injustice or any form of oppression hopefully creates a crack, a small shift in dynamics. The publication of Let me be in 2007 created a huge backlash I was neither prepared for nor had expected. A long series of losses and rights violations have taken place in all areas of our lives (my family’s and mine) since. What has mostly become very clear is that the personal and familial is tightly interwoven with the societal and cultural, and that all forms of -isms and subjugation of others take place in particular historical or political contexts. The more I peeled the layers of trauma and broke the silence the more I became aware of the people in many contexts that were invested in preventing me from writing, exhibiting, obtaining degrees, working, expressing views, finding family members, accessing documents, travelling, feeling safe in my home or in the street, receiving post, supporting charity organisations abroad, etc, etc. My family has suffered threats, accidents, financial losses, harassment and much more in various contexts. Let me be, the posters of artwork displayed in streets and this site are all products of this long journey and struggle towards deeper understanding and freedom from the trauma, through processes of acceptance and letting go, but are also a means to set boundaries and increase safety and freedom in the country I am living. Through trial and error I have worked hard for the past ten years to fight for my rights and restore areas of my life. In the end it should be everybody’s inherent right to explore their life and truths, to fulfil their potential and be able to take certain rights that most people enjoy for granted, independently of their origins, place of birth, childhood experiences or interests and aspirations.
Below I am posting something relevant to the most recent art journal pages. It is a very small extract from a memoir in progress.