Art Exhibit at Library Feature Work of Syrian Painter, Reception Planned

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The following information was provided by the Refugee Support Group of Watertown Citizens for Peace:

Honoring UN World Refugee Day, the Refugee Support Group of Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice & the Environment presents “The Art of Refuge,” a narrative installation of the work of Syrian painter Samera Birawi, who took refuge in Turkey after the bombing of her homeland began.

Installed in the T. Ross Gallery of the Watertown Free Public library, The Art of Refuge brings a voice and images that strongly tell a story of life and death, and hope.

The paintings, often created from actual photographs of the depicted events, weave a first-hand narrative of a country descending into violence, highlighting its impact on children. Yet, the artist wants to keep alive the memory of earlier peace in her town of Idlib, near Aleppo, in a geographical area of ancestral culture that designed the first alphabets 12,000 years ago, and produced the finest olive oil:

“We will remain there as long as the olive trees remain.”

Exhibit Reception: Thursday, June 22, 5:30-8 p.m., including live Zoom from Turkey with the artist at 6:30 p.m., 1st floor, Watertown Free Public Library, Watertown Savings Bank Room. Refreshments will be served

The exhibition will run from June 1-3o, 2023

Three women, born in the Middle East, the United States and Europe, teamed up to convey the art of Samera Birawi: Youla Hana, member of the Refugee Support Group; Sue-Ellen Tcherepnin, President of Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice & the environment/Refugee Support Group Founder; and Christine Arveil, Curator of the exhibition.

This event is made possible with generous support from the Watertown Community Foundation.
Watertown Citizens Refugee Support Group is a working group of Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice & the Environment. Visit for more information.

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