ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Kurdish and Arab artists in Syria are participating in the second annual art symposium in Syrian Kurdistan’s (Rojava) town of Kobani to raise awareness about the plight of the people of Afrin.
A total of 26 artists, both Kurds, and Arabs, from the regions of Kobani, Jazira, Raqqa, and Afrin, are working on paintings that reflect the suffering of the people of Afrin.
The event is organized by the Culture and Art Ministry of the Jazira administration in Rojava under the slogan “Love for The Land of Olives Is Greater Than Your Terror,” referring to a Turkish military incursion into Afrin last year. The symposium will run from May 10 to 28.
Mohammed Jawish, a Kurdish artist from the Afrin region, visited Kobani for the first time to participate in the event and relay the hardships and struggles of his people through his artwork.
Jawish said he hopes his paintings can raise awareness about the predicament of the people of Afrin and help “free their olive trees.”
“I came to this symposium on behalf of Afrin to do something for the Afrin region,” he told Kurdistan 24.
“We want to share our hardships and suffering in the form of art to the people around the world,” Jawish added. “Afrin is special, Afrin is our home. Lord willing, we will return one day.”
Each artist is working on up to two unique paintings which they will exhibit at an art gallery in the city of Qamishlo (Qamishli) later this month.
Rawda Hassan, the head of the Jazira administration’s Culture and Art Ministry, said the original plan was to hold the symposium in Afrin. However, the Turkish-led incursion into the region last year prevented that from happening, so they kept the event in Kobani.
“We began this initiative to show our support for the people in Afrin, and to raise awareness about their ongoing plight,” Hassan told Kurdistan 24.
Although this is the second time the symposium has been organized, it is the first time Arab artists have also participated in the event.
(Additional reporting by Redwan Bezar)