illustrating the Nauru files.
In August 2016 The Guardian published The Nauru Files, leaked incident reports written by staff in Australia’s detention centre on Nauru between 2013 and 2015.
These files detail 2,116 separate incidents, including many cases of assault, sexual abuse, self-harm, child abuse and abhorrent living conditions endured by asylum seekers and refugees in the care of the Australian Government. Despite the harrowing nature of the files, the situation remains and the abuse is ongoing.
In the absence of media access to the island, the project’s objective is to illustrate the Nauru files through creative expression, using art to shed light on all we can’t see.
You can view an exhibition of responses so far online or at Fortyfivedownstairs Melbourne 31st July – 11th August 2018 as an official event of Melbourne Art Week.
You can also join the response to this material whatever your discipline.
Image: screenshot from All we can’t see website. Mandatory detention continues to be part of a campaign by successive Australian governments to stop people without a valid visa (typically asylum seekers) entering the country by boat. In its present form, the policy is credited with halting the seaborne people-smuggling trade to Australia and the thousands of death associated with it. The policy is controversial and a number of detainees have harmed themselves including 19 suicides. As of April 2018 there were 1,369 people in detention. The average length of detention: 434 days, with 264 people having spent more than 730 days in detention and there were 7 children in detention facilities, 22 in Nauru Regional Processing Centre and 180 in community detention.