Voiceless Journeys is an art project that aims to celebrate the cultural diversity and raise awareness about the journey, struggle, survival and achievements of people from diverse backgrounds.
Voiceless Journeys is an attempt to build a sense of community
with greater understanding of each other through the medium of art.
Voiceless Journeys is an art project that aims to celebrate the cultural diversity and raise awareness about the journey, struggle, survival and achievements of people from diverse backgrounds. The focus was on people who had left their countries as a result of internal problems or conflicts to make their life in Australia; people who positively shape our communities.
Diverse groups of people co-exist in Australia but they do not necessarily enjoy a sense of community. There exists a challenge to build a sense of community, which opposes racism, xenophobia and oppression. Whilst acknowledging that every community is unique and changeable, interaction is the key to social change, a central force to building a community that is inclusive of all.
The journey of asylum and its consequences are often spoken of silence and written on water. If we are to use the analogy of a plant to one who flees from his or her country, it may read something like this:
“A plant is forcefully uprooted from its earth, a place where it belongs and is taken to the unknown and along an uncertain journey. This journey may take many years, and seasons will no longer matter. Along this journey, part of it dies without the soul of its native soil, its roots left open and exposed. It also begins to lose itself; the life of its senses. It then reaches a somewhat semi-permanent unknown, with and without will. Its roots are once again planted into the ground, in an unfamiliar place. Here it has two choices: one to live, the other to die. This plant will never be what it once was nor will it ever again belong to one place alone. It will not grow into the shape it would have assumed in its native soil. Its flowers may assume an unnatural colour, the leaves may take altered shapes, and the branches a distinct body. Here it takes a new form, an unfamiliar face, it adapts, it changes, it blooms, it fades, it survives…”.
A personal reflection of his own journey by desh Balasubramaniam, CEO & Artistic Director, Ondru
Photography by Shane Lam & Devika Bilimoria
Voiceless Journeys Australian Catholic University Exhibition / Photography by Sebastian Avila
Videography by Adelle Drover & Amelia Ducker