“Respect makes me strong”
By Ute Kaiser and Reem Al Sagheer
One plays football. That makes her confident. The other is proud to be a Yazidi. The third says, “Respect makes me strong.” The girls are as different as their artwork. “Mädchen*Wege“(“Girl*Ways”) is the title of their exhibition, available for viewing at the Tübinger Landratsamt until the end of November.
Painting light with the camera, making collages and taking photos of the places where the girls feel at home: all these exhibits were created at the Tübingen Girls’ meeting. Three times a week, open afternoons occur, with 60 to 90 visitors. 90% of the visitors have a refugee background, according to Lena Hezel, part of the Girls’ Meeting team at the exhibition opening. The employees their work around “what the girls need and want”, added Luzie Kollinger.
One picture shows hands decorated with henna. One poster plays with the word “anderarsatig” (“different”), which is often used to exclude. “Lieber anders als artig” (“better to be different than to be well-behaved”), says the girl with her collage.
The girls created their art in a media workshop that happens every Friday and in workshops over the semester break. There, the girls “expressed the topics they are dealing with in words and pictures”, says Luzie Kollinger. One project was dedicated to favorite places. Another to what makes girls strong. For the participants, all between the ages of 8 and 16, soccer games, their heritage, friendships, their beliefs, and especially being treated with respect all makes them strong.