A group of artists based in Athens from the refugee, local and international community came together in Spring 2017, with the idea of having a network to share and exhibit our art in a way that promotes integration and solidarity.
Since September 2017 we have our studio space at Communitism at Kerameikou 28A in Athens. Communitism is a self-funded sociο-cultural project aiming to mobilize social structures into re-activating abandoned buildings of Athens cultural heritage.
We believe having a safe art space surrounded by people who believe in equality and solidarity is a very important step in the integration movement where all of us will share the space to express ourselves to the world and discover each other’s talents as well as our own hidden treasures.
Besides organising exhibitions where our artists have their art for sale, we do workshops and try to share our community and art as wide as possible.
I am Arash. I am a refugee Facebook: Arash Hampay
|Bilal Ahmed “Spark”
I studied Law in Syria. I have been practicing art for the past four years, because I felt that art is the way to express myself.
Facebook: Spark Bilal
I am a feminist artist, curator, arts organiser who lives and works in London, and I am 70 this year.
I was a short term volunteer in Lesbos winter 2016; and Athens, winter 2017, and I made connections with volunteers working with artists, who are currently refugees living in squats and camps. The idea of supporting artists with materials, funding and art shows grew from these links. Many people in London have helped me with this project. We are now a group from many different cultures and countries and together we are creating opportunities for artists in Greece, to make art, exchange ideas and resources, find funding, and set up public exhibitions in Athens.
Documentary maker and photographer
My name is Erwin; I am from Iran. I am 26 years old, but I feel like I am still 18. I will never grow old because I believe if you smile from your heart then you reveal the age inside! I left Iran because I saw there were no rights, especially for women; also for many children. Around six years ago when I was in university I started to write about the lack of rights and share my writing with people at university, in the street, everywhere. It was so hard and strange for me that our women aren’t allowed to swim in the sea or to go to a concert stadium with men!
We have so many fantastic female singers, but they couldn’t participate at a concert for all people, only a concert for women! And so many things like this made me crazy! I tried to make some protests but after a year, police found me through my Facebook and they put me in prison for four months. After that I realized they had blocked my passport too, so I couldn’t leave the country, just for wanting to show how our women live in Iran.
Superpowers put their feet on your throat and don’t let you talk about the truth. I will fight for righteousness non-stop! It doesn’t matter where I am… and now I will continue for all the people around the world! Until one day all of us become One. It doesn’t matter if black-or-white, East-or-West, and especially women-or-men! We are all human. My heart is a home for people.
So now I’m here. In Athens almost 2 years. I try to help refugees and homeless people through my photographs. You might ask how!? It’s so easy. I take some photos and sell them and the half of the money from this, will go to refugees and homeless people (who are in need).
So if you want to be part of it, please join me through buying my art or share them with your friends. Let’s do it together. We can make this world more beautiful. TOGETHER
I am Elias Sharifi I was born in 1997 Herat, Afghanistan. I had a calm and curious character and I loved artistic works since I was a child. During school I was interested in science, history, Technology and Art. When I got to Greece, I started photography with training of my friend and quick improvement in this field caused a special motivation to form within me. The success I achieved in “AMAKA” caused me to follow this profession seriously and learn more in “Metapolis Photography Seminar”. My knowledge about Perspective paved one of the best ways to show my point of view about Art to all, although I don’t have a camera, because Photography is all about telling a good story. I’m really interested in playing musical instrument, film making, working with computer software and drawing. For any question or further information please contact me via:
I am Hanaa (30 years old) from Egypt. I came to Athens with my husband to complete his PhD research. In my country I was a pharmacist.
I love to make different kinds of art with several sorts of materials. I work with clay, knitting, making accessories, making archets, drawing, satin embroidery. I have learnt all that since making beautiful things with my hand gives me a special time. Seeing the result takes away any daily stress.
Making art takes my mind to a very kind and beautiful world away from the many problems we face. I believe that if you want to change the world around us, we must be one hand, and not to be tiny pieces of puzzle someone put them where he want. To overcome all terrorism and hate around us we must spread love, peace and smiles. One hand can't clap…
|Hossein Shabani “Kurosh”||
I am a painter from Iran, where I did my masters of art in Law. In Iran I worked as a documentary and talkshow producer and director for television for 13 years.
Due to political activities, I had to leave my country in 2007. Eight years ago I arrived in Greece where I started painting.
I am Hussain Badran from Syria, 23 years old. I was born in a city called Tal tamer, and then our family moved to live in Ras Al Ain (a small city thatis on the Turkish border). From childhood I was fond of art, specifically drawing and music. I spent all my time alone drawing and singing and creating in my imagination a lot of stories and I lived them in my mind. I preferred isolation than engaging with the community like other children. I remember that I was absent a lot at school.
I do not remember when I started drawing, but at the age of 11 I felt I needed to develop my talents and I began to teach myself professionalism in drawing and I was fond of artists likes Da Vinci and Michelangelo, Van Gogh and many others. I began to draw a wide range of images, including copying some of the paintings of famous artists. I particularly worked on The Massacre of the Innocents - by the Belgian artist Peter Paul Rubens: This painting was a qualitative leap in my professional development in painting. I was amazed by his ability to portray faces, expressions, details of muscles and clothes.
In all my childhood I felt that I did not belong to my home society, customs and traditions. and felt I didnt fit in any country, as if my nationality was the whole world. I dreamed a lot of traveling around the world and visiting the most famous cities of art.
The war started in 2012, and for personal reasons I had to leave. I crossed the border to Turkey and then Greece. I have been in Greece for 2 years. With Perspectives Art I have found a community of artists and this means a lot to me.
32 years old, graduated from Duhok university department of Economics. I live in France now.
As war started, like thousands of refugees, I had to leave my country with my family in order to save our souls.. In a journey of seeking for peace.. After the difficulty of reaching Greek land, only a few days passed, then we heard the border is closed and the journey is gonna be longer. Then it was the time of spending one year in tents "refugee camp" ... As I used to paint little in Iraq, our (me and my brother’s) passion of painting became more when we saw how much is important to reach sound of those who don't have sound.
I was lucky to be supported by great friends (volunteers), that they supported me with providing painting stuff for me.. That I could do something..avoiding stress and trying to transfer messages of thousands of refugees, and specially what happened and still is happening with my Yazidi people..who faced 74 genocides along the history in the Middle East.. The last one was in 2014 when ISIS (Islamic state) killed 5000 of my people and kidnapped nearly 5000 women, girls and children.. The last genocide is still continuing up to this day..
Hello, I am Jameel Khan from Afghanistan. I am a sketch artist but I also like acrylic painting.
I started drawing 7 months ago; I didn't even know that I can draw like this. Now I love drawing; it is a of my life and I can't even spend my time without this. For the future I hope I will be a very good artist. In order to become that, I am trying to do my best in everyday life.
Facebook: Jameel Khan
My name is Khatereh, I'm 16 years old. I am Afghan, but I was born in Iran.
I like painting and taking photographs. At the camp, I was teaching children to paint. I didn’t have any experience, but I love children very much and I have always tried to be a good teacher to them.
Paintings and photographs offer a safe haven from problems. They allow me to enter a new world. With my work, I invite you to see that world.
I am Mehdi Taghavi from Iran, 36 years old. I am a painter since the year 2000. My interests are: visual arts, painting, sculpturing.
The value of art for me: Art represents the finest feelings of mine! Since I was a teenager my interest appeared to painting and sculpturing! I was making many pictures and objects in my mind, and slowly slowly I started painting. Due to this feeling, I took the pen, and awakened this intrinsic energy.
Why Art is existing for me? More often, I am interested in expressing my internal feelings and the issues of the society that I am living in! The weakest members of Iranian society were women! And I was drawing them. I was trying to show which their difficulties and restrictions for the women in our society are, by my paintings. “Liberty” is the most important subject for me!
I’m 47-years old and I am from Isfahan city in the south of Iran. I have two children, aged 15 and 17.
Because my Christianity and my political activities were opposed to Islam and the regime, I was forced to flee from the country and separate from my wife.
When I was in Iran I worked for five years in fast food shops and for eight years in the construction industry.
I have been in Greece for almost a year. The first 36 days I spent in prison in Thessaloniki due to not having asylum papers. I then spent a further two months in another prison. In my period of detention, making art was my way to express myself. I created a visual diary with sketches and paintings.
|Mohammed Badran – “Hamudy”||
I’m Mohamed Badran from Syria 19 years old I live in Syria I like art and I like to draw, I did not have the opportunity to show my work in an exhibition or even draw, because of war, poverty and the difficulty of finding drawing materials, and also because of the borders being closed i can't even leave my place to go. To the place where I can show a my art and find someone who cares about it and supports me, thanks.
My Name is Mohammed Badran, from Syria. I am 15 years old. Currently I live in Turkey and I'm a student. Art means all my life for me, l like to paint faces.
I am a visual artist from Pakistan currently living in Athens. I love to make sketch paintings and drawings with a variety of themes that life offers, including instruments, nature and portraits.
My name is Nisreen Hasan. 20 years old. I'm from Syria / Al-Raqqa Kurdish origin. I live in Turkey. My talent is drawing. Drawing for me is more than a dream and ambition. I will grant my desire in all the difficulties and challenges. I've developed my talent alone without anybody's help. Drawing fullfills my desire.
I am Sally, born in Iraq and raised in Athens, Greece. I came to Greece when I was two years old with my family… And as long as I can remember, I loved to imagine, explore and create! Art has always been a positive influence in my life and for that, I am grateful. I valued the way painting and creating helped me to understand my own identity and self-concept, allowing all of my emotions within to be ‘stroked’ onto the blank canvas before me, and echo the inner voice of my soul.
Art carries an immense power with the ability to cause change. Every creation is a silent message to the universe. When I paint, my mind just goes into another utopian world of silence where all the external noise we live in is muted. I believe that every being has an artist within them in their own unique way, and allowing their creative trigger to portray itself is a vital essence for the future world we want to create and live harmoniously in. A world where our mind, body and soul co-exist in an equal balance of synchronization.
Art is my passion. Art is my meditation.
. Namaste .
My soul honors your soul.
Feel free to follow my work or contact me at the following:
|Wael Habbal "Lio"||
I am Wael from Damascus (Syria) and I am 25 years old.I studied Law for 2 years, till in 2012 I had to leave Syria.
I always loved art and felt that there is an artist inside me, but the war has eaten my childhood art, so I lost all the art that I made so far.
Since that happened I stopped practicing art for 4 years and my feelings were speechless, until my Angel came and pushed me to start making art again. I had my first exhibition at Mosaic Center, Lesvos Solidarity last year. From that moment on I promised my soul that I will never give up on art, so it can express itself.
Facebook: Wael Habbal
I am Yohannes from Asmara, Eritrea and I am 40 years old. I am a self-taught artist. I always loved sketching and painting as a child, but unfortunately I did not have the chance to study Arts, because of the situation in my country. I never stopped to practice my skills though, whenever I got the chance.
I worked for more than nine months as teacher in the /Arts and eco-friendly crafts / section in Mosaik Support Center on Lesvos island. My first exhibition was through them, and two more exhibitions followed with their kind support. Currently I live in Athens and I am happy to be part of Perspectives Art, in order to furtherly explore my path and passion as an artist.
My name is Salam. I am from Iraq, and I am 28 years old. I was living in Baadre village in Kurdistan, with my family of 14 members. We were living in difficult material conditions. We were threatened because we are Yazidi, which is an ethnic minority. Despite all of this, we challenged life’s difficulties and started going to school to get proper education. We were high achievers on all levels. That is when I started my studying journey. I studied six years, and completed my primary school.
But then, I had to stop studying because we couldn’t afford the fees, and because, as I have a very big family, I needed to earn money to support them. I started working in order to give my brothers and sisters the opportunity to finish their studies. Ten years passed, and after they all graduated and had jobs of their own, I started to think I could continue my studies. But because it had been ten years since I had left school, I was not allowed to go to school anymore. That is why I started to study at home. I was only allowed to go to school for my exams. I was studying hard and working at the same time, with no teacher to teach me. To get a teacher, you need to pay, but unfortunately I had no money. The money that I earned from my work, I gave it all to my family.
But I never gave up and continued to study on my own. Sometimes, my friends helped me. Finally, after many years, I completed high school. I was so happy that I couldn’t believe it, because my dream had finally become true. All of this was thanks to my mother. She supported me the whole time and pushed me to continue my studies. Because my average was not very high, I couldn't go to University yet, and had to wait one more year. But after that year, I was finally accepted in the Faculty of Education and Arabic in Kurdistan. The University was far from our home, about one hour’s drive away, and I had to pay 220 US dollars for the car driver every month. This amount of money was too much for me, but my brothers told told that it was important that I complete my education. They said: “You stopped your studies because of us and now we want to help you achieve your dream”. And so, finally I went to University, and I was so proud, in front of all of my friends. I finished my first year, and I was one of the best.
One day, when I came back from University, I heard my family talking about the fact that we had to leave Iraq and go to a safer country. When I heard this I was in a shock and I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I knew if we left, I would not graduate and make my dream come true. But I had no choice, I had to go with them. The decision was made to leave, but first, we had to find a way to collect the money necessary to make the journey. Because we are a big family, we needed a lot of money to pay the smugglers. So we decided to sell our house to a smuggler who would promise to take us to a safe country in Europe. Our house, the house we had built with our own hands, and which we had worked on for two years, day and night. We had dreamt of this house a long time. It was the only thing we had, and now we had to sell it. My father found a smuggler and told him: “We will give you our house if you take us to a safe country”. The smuggler accepted and so, we sold him our house. We also had some goods and furniture in our house which we sold too, because we needed money for the journey. Because we were under the pressure to leave as quickly as possible, we had no time to bargain properly and sold our goods at a very cheap price. Then, we started to prepare ourselves for the long journey ahead. I went to my University for the last time, to say goodbye to my friends. I told my friends that I was sorry to leave, but I had no choice. I didn't want to leave but I had to. There were tears in my eyes when I left the University, because I was about to give up on my dream.
On the 9th of February 2016 we traveled to Turkey. We stayed in Turkey for about one month, trying to cross the Bulgarian border but we couldn't, after trying six times. The family was suffering and tired, and we decided to find another way; to try crossing the sea by boat to Greece. We spent one month trying to cross, during which we suffered physically and mentally. After trying three times, we finally made it and we reached Lesvos Island on the 6th of March 2016. We stayed in Mytilene for six days, and then we were taken to Ritsona Refugee Camp on the 13th of March 2016. We have been in Ritsona Camp ever since. And we wrer don't have money for boat,so some of our relative gave us the amount in debt،،about 25000€,,so we have to pay back My father and mother, with seven of my brothers and sisters were relocated to France on the 20th of September 2016. But I'm married now, and here with my wife. One of my brothers is also married with a son, and both our families are considered independent from my parents, and so we were not relocated with them. So five of us after 6 months then we also relocated to france,and now we are in Boedeaux city,, Salam has taken up painting while he is living in Greece and waiting for his family’s asylum case to be processed. “I just started two months ago, without taking classes or anything just on my own. I wanted to paint to deliver a message through my paintings, to tell everyone what it is like to live a refugee life, how we feel, and how hard it is to fight for a better and safer life. I want everyone to know about our situation”. Salam also plays three instruments; Saz, Oud, and Guitar, and plays music everyday, as a way to express his feelings and frustrations. He compares his painting to playing music: “It’s just a way for us to express ourselves, to have our voices heard, and to show that we refugees, paint, play music, we are just like you, in the end, we are all just human beings”. Salam has painted over 70 paintings, and he had an exhibition in Switzerland on the 25 of February.
Facebook: Salam Noah ART
- 22nd of June, 14:00-19:00 at 4bid Gallery, Overtoom 301, Amsterdam. Live Syrian violin music from 17:00-19:00.
- 1st of June 2019, 18:00-22:00 at P21 Gallery, Chalton Street London, UK. Creative Connections: Linking Cities Through Art. Collaboration with London-based Shado. Art by Khatereh Ahmadi, Hussain Badran, Wael Habbal, Mostafa Rajabi, Elias Sharifi and Sally Talal.
- 11th-13th of May 2019 "Creative Connections - Linking Cities Through Art" in Vryssaki Cafe at Vryssakiou 17, Plaka. Opening: 19:00.
- 22nd-27th of January 2019 from 12am until 7pm. "In Our Perspective" at Victoria Square Project, Elpidos 13, Victoria, Athens.
- 4th-5th of October 2018 from 7pm until 11pm. Perspectives Art Exhibition at Communitism, Kerameikou 28, Metaksourgeio, Athens.
- 20th of September-4th of October 2018 "YAA1: Black light rising, Athens, Now." at 3rd floor, 8 Miaouli Street, 10554, Monastiraki, Athens, Greece. Art by Mehdi Arashk, Wael Habban and Erwin Zareie among others. Open weekdays from 12:00-15:00 & 18:00-22:00, Saturdays 12:00-21:00. Free admission.
- 15th-25th of February 2018 at TAF the Art Foundation at Normanou 5, Athens.
- 9th-23rd of December 2017 "Perspectives: Athens in transition" at Fokianou 24, 7th Floor, Athens. Thursdays-Saturdays 5pm-8pm.
- 9th-16th of November 2017 Opening Perspectives studio and art expo at Communitism at Keramikou 28, Metaxourgio. Open weekdays from 6pm-9pm, weekend: 12am-6pm. Opening party: 8pm-10pm.
- 7th-10th of September 2017 in Vryssaki Cafe at Vryssakiou 17, Plaka. Art by Erwin Zareie, Hussain Badran, Khatereh Ahmadi, Mehrdad Mehrabpour and Muhammad Azam.
By Bilal Ahmed "Spark":
By Erwin Zareie:
By Hanaa Ibrahim:
By Hossein Shabani “Kurosh”:
By Hussain Badran:
By Ismael Noh:
By Jameel Khan:
By Khatereh Ahmadi:
By Mehdi Taghavi:
By Mehrdad Mehrabpour:
By Mohammed Badran – “Hamudy”
By Muhammad Azam:
By Salam Noah
By Sally Talal
By Wael Habbal "Lio"
By Yohannes Zerazion: