Saturday, March 31, 2007

Artists Without Borders

The war in Kosov@ caused approximately 800,000 refugees in neighboring Albania and Macedonia. About 200,000 more are still displaced inside ex-Yugoslavia (now Serbia and Montenegro) and thousands are feared dead. The NATO air strikes caused more than 1000 civilian deaths and killed an unknown number of Yugoslav military men.

Despite the presence of 37,500 NATO troops and UN peacekeepers (KFOR), revengeful attacks by returning Albanians have caused nearly 200 deaths and 150.000 Serb, Roma (Gypsy), Bosniak and Gorantsy refugees have left Kosov@. About 1,500 persons of Serb or Roma (Gypsy) ethnicity and about 3.000 of Albanians are still missing.

Moreover, ethnic unrest has also spread to the Preshevo valley and the border with Macedonia

Approximately two million children in ex-Yugoslavia have experienced the horror of war. They not only need medical care, food, water, etc. They also need psychological relief. Although their school process is returning to normalcy, they lack the most basic school materials.

ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS has been organizing a successful donation of art supplies and school materials by Japanese children. Japanese children have donated sketchbooks, colored pencils or crayons to an unknown Albanian, Serbian, Gypsy (Roma) or Goranets friend in Kosov@. On the first page Japanese children have attached a picture of themselves, made a colorful drawing and written a little message of support and solidarity to their unknown friend By expressing themselves, children have the opportunity to attain catharsis (spiritual purification) that is probably the most important function of art. Catharsis through art is an essential part of psychological (mental and emotional) healing. (read more)
(childish drawings from Mitrovica,the divided city)

Paintings from Kosovo-video(press the left pause button in each painting)
by Albanianarts.com-~-http://www.albanian-art.com/(Agim Zajmi Gallery)-
Serbian paintings from Serbianaart.com(Gallery)-~-Naive Art in Serbia-

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