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Of the total 4.3 million refugees from Syria, one quarter are currently living in Lebanon, most in quasi-legal camps located within sight of the eastern border. With little-to-no government support for the refugees, NGOs like the Kayany Foundation have had to provide for basic needs. They’ve built schools within the camps to give children some sense of normalcy and a path towards a meaningful future. In late 2014 and again in early 2016, Kayany provided support for WAR-TOYS and facilitated a series of art-based interviews and group activities with children at their schools. Despite the gravity of the subject matter (and sometimes harsh weather outside), the interview sessions with the girls and boys were positive, empowering, and energetic thanks to the involvement of Lebanese Art Therapist Myra Saad.
WAR-TOYS: ISRAEL, WEST BANK, GAZA STRIP – Using principles of play and art therapy, children who have been affected by conflict become art directors for Brian McCarty’s photographs of toys found within warzones, placed and posed to recreate shared fears and witnessed events. The resulting images offer rare and fascinating insights into the contemporary experiences of girls and boys living on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.
“My goal for WAR-TOYS is to change lives,” says artist Brian McCarty. The showing of work at Peanut Underground Art Projects and upcoming book release are the first volume in what will be a long-running project.
Daniel Bos was awarded ESRC +3 funding in 2011 to research the popular geopolitics of military video games. The research will specifically focus on the geopolitical and militaristic significance of commercial first-person shooter video games, such as ‘Call of Duty’. Furthermore, the project will use multiple, innovative methods to investigate players’ engagements with the games.
The research will contribute to current academic discussions by:
Through articles, images, survey data and interviews, Sowing Seeds: The Militarisation of Youth and How to Counter It documents the seeds of war that are planted in the minds of young people in many different countries. However, it also explores the seeds of resistance to this militarisation that are being sown resiliently and creatively by numerous people. READ MORE