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5 (and a bit) Questions with… Farah Gabdon

05 January 2018 | Amal Team

I believe that art is one of the few mediums that has the power to give people a voice and to validate their experiences. We as artists have a responsibility to tell and share our truths. In our own voice.

Amal supported Writers Realm, a new project developed by the Anti-Tribalism Movement, to encourage young Somalis in London to use poetry as a means of creative expression. Hear more from participants at the Writers Realm here: http://bit.ly/2zWs3Lx.

We also caught up with Poet and Workshop Leader, Farah Gabdon.

1. Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Farah Gabdon. A poet and English teacher from West London. I published my first collection of poetry ‘Breathing Just A Little’ in December 2016 and have performed my spoken word poetry in London, Oslo, Helsinki and Malmo.

2. Do you think an artist has a particular role or responsibility in the world?

I believe that art is one of the few mediums that has the power to give people a voice and to validate their experiences. We as artists have a responsibility to tell and share our truths. In our own voice.

3. How do you see your role?

My role was simply to create an environment the participants felt safe enough to let their thoughts out freely.

4. Does identity play a role in your creative craft, and if so how?

Identity plays perhaps the biggest role in my writing. In my life. I exist in between multiple identities. I experience the world through two cultures. I rationalize my thoughts in two tongues. And because of that I’m influenced heavily by other writers with similar struggles such as Mark Gonzalez, Suheir Hammad, Warsan Shire, Nayyirah Waheed.

5. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given over the course of your career?

To write what you know.

6. What was your project and why was it important to you?

My project was called ‘Writers Realm’ and this was a weekly performance poetry writing workshop, targeted at BAME participants. It meant the world to me, to be able to provide a safe, creative space for young BAME’s to explore the topics that affect us. To share. To heal. To express themselves in an open and honest space. It was an honour for me to witness the group grow.

A bit more…

Where’s your favourite place to see art?
I love to see art everywhere. On the street. On the train. In a museum. Everywhere.

 

 

 

 

Amal’s founding donors

Amal is pleased to welcome its three founding donors the Saïd Foundation, Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

Photography and Philosophy at Rich Mix

Amal and Rich Mix offered free photography skills workshops to a diverse mix of Muslim and non-Muslim women in East London. Watch their exhibition Exposure – Imprints in Time.

Short Muslim heritage stories

Khayaal Theatre Company launched a series of short films telling inspiring and reflective stories earlier this year. Watch Tales of the Sands from Tunisia and Life and Death at the Spring here.

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