Few more days and Borderland – An interactive exhibition  will be unveiled.

IYNF, shifting toward the topic of the new year “Border-free”, faces the lack of knowledge about the Refugees in Macedonia setting an art exhibition in Prague.

From the 10th, on the ornamental frame of the Human Rights Day, the Opening of the event at Café Lajka. The exhibition will be visitable till the 17th December.


Photo made by Borce Popovski

Remarkable is the amount of refugees who crossed into Europe in the last two years, sparking a crisis as countries struggled to cope with the influx, and creating division in the EU over how best to deal with resettling people.

Macedonia played an essential part in the refugee crises due to its geographical position as a transit country towards Western Europe. From 2014 to 2016, more than a million refugees passed through Macedonia and they often faced violence, robberies and oppression. However, volunteers from Macedonia tirelessly and unselfishly helped refugees in order to provide them with safe passage, humanitarian aid and psycho-social support.

After building a razor wire fence at the border of the Macedonian territory, in April 2016 the Balkan route was officially closed. Consequently, around 1500 refugees were stranded in the Macedonian territory without legal status and without a possibility to go back, stay or continue their journey. They are still accommodated in closed camps in Macedonia deprived from free movement, education, job possibilities and health insurance.

In short, Macedonia for them is a border land. For the special occasion, the art gallery in Cafe Lajka will become likewise “Borderland”. The event provides mostly the exposure of professional photographs including the masters of Macedonian photography , Nake Batev , Borce Popovski and Robert Atanasovski.


Photo made by Robert Atanasovski

Through these photos  the viewer will be called to interact  by means of simple questions that refer to the daily the observer becomes an observer or herself.

He will be unknowingly prompt to reflect, called to identify himself with the Refugees’ life, driven to overcome the mental borders. Not less, the viewer, answering to the questions, will contribute of the artwork creation.

Ivana Chaloska, one of the photographer and maker of an interactive artwork on-site, will be the special guest of the Opening, ready to answer any questions. She will be accompanied by Tara Kalaputi and Jasmin Redzepi active members of LEGIS, a Macedonian NGO which holds activities related to delivering the necessary humanitarian aid to the refugees.

Indeed, Borderland – An interactive exhibition  is the natural evolution of the same event which was held in Ohird and Bitola (Macedonia). The makers, Tara Kalaputi and Jasmin Redzepi, were able to achieve a wide range of people raising awareness about the matter.


Jasmin Redzepi and Tara Kalaputi

Now the referents are the Czechs and the foreigners living in Prague.  

With the scope to reach as many people as possible and spreading sensibility about Refugees’ life condition, IYNF is ready for the challenge. Not less is aimed to make the viewer pleasantly amazed.In this respect we strongly believe in the power of Art to convey messages. The unspoken dialogue of an artwork can reach the heart more easily  than a politician speech.  Of the same mind was the Belgian artist Jean Delville who wrote way back in the early 1900:

“It is necessary to speak clearly and precisely of the civilizing mission of art… It is also necessary to speak of the moral effect which a work of art produces on people, on the public, the moralizing strength of Art, [which is] more salutary, more pacifying than that of Politics.”

In other words we could say that the “civilizing mission” of Borderland – An interactive exhibition  is finding individuals answers about collective issues . Waiting for the 10th December reasonable pose the question:

” What does the word “refugee” mean to you?  “


Photo made by Ivana Chaloska

Andrea Nicoletti