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Can we live a meaningful life away from home?

Photographs and a film will concentrate on the social issue of migrants and their lives away from their home country on Saturday at the Goethe-Institut in Nicosia.

The eyes behind the photographs in the collection Apples for Sale – which touch on the issue of Indonesian maids living and working in Hong Kong – belong to photographer Rebecca Sampson. The women in the photographs are seen as second-class migrants in a parallel female subculture. Its focus lies on the contrast between the uniform everyday constraints they experience in the households of their employers and the young women’s desire to lead a meaningful existence and explore their own individuality.

The extensive research for the project Apples for Sale was funded by the Robert Bosch Stiftung in cooperation with the Literarisches Colloquium Berlin and within the context of the program Grenzganger China – Deutschland. The exhibition will be shown at the same time at Deichtorhallen / Haus der Photographie, Hamburg.

Sampson is a German-American photographer living in Berlin. She studied at the Ostkreuz School of Photography in Berlin. Her award-winning work focuses on exceptional people and social issues. She has showcased her photographs in Germany, India, Mexico, Poland and the USA. She is currently working on a science and art project with the Technical University in Berlin.

The opening of the exhibition will be accompanied by the premiere of the documentary film Together Apart by Maren Wickwire.

Together Apart is an intimate family portrait of two Igorot women from the Cordilleras who left the Philippines to seek work abroad.

They end up in Cyprus even though it offers one of the lowest wages for migrant domestic helpers. The two women are Guil Ann, a 25-year-old who follows her mother, Carren, to the other side of the world for employment. Months after mother and daughter reunite in Cyprus, unexpected events lead to Carren’s forced departure. This happens after Carren has been living in Cyprus for almost two decades, and now she has to adjust to a new beginning in the Philippines.

Wickwire, who is based in Cyprus and the USA, is the director of award winning films. She has a MA in Visual Media Anthropology from Freie Universitat Berlin and a Diploma in Communication Design from the Folkwang University of the Arts. Her multivocal installations have been toured globally.

In her practice-led research she focuses on labour migration, women’s issues, refugee communities in the USA and Europe as well as peacemaking and post-conflict resolutions.

The exhibition and film screening help us see beyond our island and give a glance at a nuanced picture of life with all pros and cons and parallel worlds that play an important role in the search for self-determination and living a meaningful life.

Apples for Sale and Together Apart
Photography exhibition by Rebecca Sampson and screening of the documentary Together Apart by Maren Wickwire. Exhibtion open on February 10at 6pm until March 3 and screening on February 10 at 6pm. Goethe-Institut, Nicosia. 6pm. Tel: 22-674606

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