Laura Nyahuye (Maokwo Arts) and Heaven Crawley (Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations, Coventry University) are, respectively, an artist and a research professor based in Coventry, UK. Whilst we might appear to have little in common, the COVID-19 lockdown has provided us with an opportunity to draw together our personal and professional experiences in order to reflect on issues of migration, resilience and hope in times of crisis. Individually and through conversations with each another by email, WhatsApp and Zoom, we have taken the opportunity provided by the lockdown to explore our shared experiences as women, wives, (grand)mothers and survivors of hardship and domestic violence, producing a series of creative outputs (prose, drawings, body adornment, photography, video) which explore the ways in which our own and societal expectations of gendered and racialized roles and responsibilities have shaped our lives. By sharing our experiences – often in very frank and explicit ways – we want to highlight the ways in which, as women, we can come together to push against the categories that limit individual and collective possibilities for change.
This collaboration has been funded by Coventry Creates – a programme funded jointly by the University of Warwick and Coventry University