As international tensions affect relations between communities at home, an arts programme in Shoreditch is seeking to bring people from different backgrounds together.
The Three Faith Forum's Urban Dialogues: Navigations invites audiences to an exhibition exploring faith, belief, migration and personal identity. A three-week programme of talks, performances and workshops will give people the chance to explore what it means to live together in a culturally mixed society – at a time when public debate on these issues is highly polarised.
Stephen Shashoua, Director of 3FF said: “Recent events in the Middle East have shown how closely linked the international and the local are today. While we cannot directly influence developments over there, we can work to stop the hostilities spilling over into our own neighbourhoods. Events like these, where people come together in open and mutually respectful dialogue, are crucial to protecting the relations between our communities we are working so hard to build.”
This year's Urban Dialogues exhibition has been curated by artist and curator Barby Asante. Her work is often archive and dialogue based, exploring place, identity and the stories and hidden histories that make up multicultural Britain.
Barby Asante said: “Heated debates about immigration and national identity rage around the world, and religious belief is often cited as one of the key factors pushing peoples apart. Urban Dialogues wants to show another path forward – one in which our differences are acknowledged, appreciated and explored, rather than seen as a reason for potential conflict.”
* More about the Three Faith Forum and Navigations here: http://www.3ff.org.uk/ud2014