A Place Elsewhere.
People’s relationships to places have been widely explored by anthropologists, debating whether we can approach people as rooted within a territory or if connections between identity and territory are merely social constructs. Following Hevin, Mohamed and Mireille, who all came to the Danish city of Randers after fleeing from their homelands, Syria and Congo, my project revisits the debates relating people and place.
The project explores how Mireille, Hevin and Mohamed interact with Randers, and how their interactions relate to the narratives they each create of migrating and resettling. The project is based on collaborative film-making and participatory photography, where Mireille, Hevin and Mohamed are the main photographers, photographing their everyday lives in Randers. Through their words and photographs, Mireille, Hevin and Mohamed tell us about their experiences of settling somewhere new. Experiences of loss, sorrow, hope, strength, and the everyday life as it is lived.
In the film, Far away from Syria, Mohamed is the narrator, recollecting experiences of living in a war zone, fleeing from his homeland, arriving to Denmark, and waiting around in a Danish asylum centre. Mohamed’s narration is based on a manuscript of Mohamed’s story, articulated by him, put together by me, and jointly edited. Mohamed’s story is visualised through found footage, moving images, and Mohamed’s own photographs of his migrational journey, and of the two Danish asylum centres where he stayed. In conjunction with Hevin’s, Mohamed’s and Mirelle’s photographs of their lives in Randers, the film aims to provide an understanding of how the experiences of fleeing and uncertain living become inherent parts of the experience of resettling.
- Anna Frohn Pedersen