Parting of a Migrant

Parting of a Migrant

Robert McCormack

This piece of work exploring the Refugee crisis, focuses on honouring our elders and the journey that older people, especially women, are forced to make, when they become refugees.  Older women, have so much less to gain and so much to lose as they move away from communities, routines and traditions that have been familiar to them all their lives. I chose to sculpt an elderly lady, burdened down both physically and mentally by her responsibilities, frailties and the journey she is undertaking. 

Cutting the sculpture in half poses questions about distance, separation and time. The work is documented through five photographs. The first representing2011, the start of the Syrian conflict, presents the woman in her entirety.  

By 2012 the sculpture is cut in half and as the years and war progresses, the woman is pulled further and further apart. 

What does this elderly woman feel as she reluctantly leaves her homeland, a place where her sense of belonging, family life and security has been destroyed?  What part of herself does she leave behind as she embarks on the migrant trail? As the years of war continue to shatter peoples homelands and families, does time, circumstance and distance help to soften memories or just create a polarisation of their sense of insecurity and loss?