“I want to paint more and more women who are standing on the stage and talking about how they challenge the patriarchy and injustice.”
– Arezo Aziz, artist
“ I live and work in Afghanistan. Afghan women are no longer silent. Our struggle continues but our hope will not fade.”
– Mary Akrami, community participant
The Leo Kelly Blacktown Arts Centre
Thursday 3 February – Saturday 26 February 2022
Panel discussions and Afghan tea corners
Saturday 12 February, 2 – 4 pm
Saturday 19 February , 2 – 4 pm
Saturday 26 February, 2 – 4 pm
My Life, My Story shares 21 personal stories of women living outside of Afghanistan. Their stories speak to resilience, displacement and migration, and the effects of war. This project began before the change in government in Afghanistan in October 2021.
My Life, My Story features the debut documentary film by Maryam and an exhibition of new paintings by artists, Arezo Aziz, Sara Barackzay, Lida Sultani Farahin, Neelab Omar, Fozia Zahid and Zahid Ahmed. Join Maryam and the artists for panel discussions, conversations and Afghan tea corners on Saturday 12, 19 and 26 February.
My Life, My Story is one of two projects presented by Blacktown Arts in 2022 about the impacts of the war in Afghanistan. The first is a partnership with Afghan Women on the Move (AWOTM) – an organisation that was founded by humanitarian, producer and artist, Maryam Zahid.
AWOTM is a global platform uniting woman of the Afghan diaspora to share their life stories through creative arts and storytelling, breaking cycles of isolation and disadvantage. AWOTM’s goal is to support women to find their voice and empower them with the tools and resources they need to feel valued and their differences respected. They are creating the opportunity for women to participate in all aspects of community life.
Later this year Blacktown Arts will present 20 Years of the Afghan War. Originally conceived in 2019 by journalist, author and film-maker Antony Loewenstein and artist Tia Kass alongside Afghans in Australia, Afghanistan and the Diaspora, Twenty Years is a multi-platform examination of the war and its aftermath after 20 years of conflict. This project launched in October 2021 with public events featuring Afghans in Australia globally discussing the war and new artwork and journalism on civilians affected by the conflict.
Phase two launches in 2022, an exhibition of Afghan artists in Australia, Afghanistan and the Diaspora and features the work of Khadim Ali, Elyas Alavi, Orna Kazimi, Najiba Noori, Tia Kass and Antony Loewenstein.