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Scratched photos of asylum seekers in a church crypt
An exhibition of photos of people seeking asylum in the UK with their faces crudely scratched away. This is an exhibition by Sam Ivin, who started his research in a drop in centre in Cardiff and continued all over England.
The result is a series of hand scratched portraits, where the eyes have been erased: once arrived in the UK, these people find themselves in a state of limbo, having to await news of their application for asylum for months or even years.
To echo the title of the exhibition, they become “lingering ghosts”, people in between two worlds, often unable to work to support themselves, but also denied benefits to feed themselves.
Stuck in bureaucratic limbo.
Ivin said that the physically scratched portraits attempt to convey the cruel loss of self, and the frustration that befalls them as they wait to learn their fate.
Despite being represented without their eyes, these people have an identity and the text beside each portrait persuades us to recognise them as fathers, mothers, sons and daughters.
The exhibition, Lingering Ghosts is free to visit and can be found in the crypt of St Martin-in-the-Fields church beside Trafalgar Square.
It’s open daily until 31st August 2018.
This article first appeared on www.ianvisits.co.uk
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