Rising Among Ruins, Dancing Amid Bullets

© Maryam Ashrafi

From October 4 to 31

Maryam Ashrafi

“There is another face to war. Before the fighting begins, the men and women who will take part in the combat face a long wait behind the front. And once the firing has stopped, the silence of the ruins remains. These moments of time and these places, away from the din of weapons, where people are not yet dying or are dying no longer, are also part of war. War is as present here as on the battlefield. It is here that it leaves its mark on bodies, becomes embedded in the landscape, changes men and women and sticks to children’s steps. Maryam Ashrafi started roaming this liminal world, between death that lurks and life that goes on, during her first visit to Kurdistan in 2012, and she has continued to do so ever since the conflict between Kurdish forces and Islamic State began in 2014.
Although it is never in the field of her photos, the war and its impact are omnipresent. In the rubble of a flattened city like Kobani where male and female Kurdish Syrian fighters held out for months against a siege by the Jihadists in the autumn and winter of 2014, she takes stock of the scale of the disaster and at the same time the life force of those who cling on among the rubble and try to rebuild. With Kurdish women fighters Maryam Ashrafi also draws attention to the way the Kurdish movement in the Syrian civil war has served to transform the position of women.
She shows how the magnetic field of war, even at the the most intimate level, can throw the lives of those who are subjected to it, especially the women, off course and change them if not destroy them. Through her lens Maryam Ashrafi tells of communities reshaped by weapons, wounded by the war but at the same time creating a new collective existence within it.” — Allan Kaval

Musée d’Art et d’Histoire Baron Gérard

37, rue du Bienvenu
Open every day
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and 2 pm to 6 pm

Free Admission

October 4 2021


Musée d’Art et d’Histoire Baron Gérard