Episodes / Ep. 212 - Thana Faroq

212. Thana Faroq

Documentary Photographer

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Thana Faroq is a Yemeni documentary photographer

Episode 212: Thana Faroq and I spoke about her experiences as a refugee in Europe, her experiences in camps, and her relocation to Europe through the lens of her exceptional book I Don’t Recognize Me In the Shadows

Amina’s daughter Yasmeen. Markazi camp Djibouti

This is real

The war is real

My departure from Yemen is real

Leaving my family behind is real

My resettlement in the Netherlands is real

Moving from one place to another is real

My clothes that no longer hold smells familiar to me are real

My Syrian roommate who attempted to cross the Turkish border five times is real

My Kurdish roommate who sings in the shower is real

This sorrowful song she plays in the room repeatedly is real

All this noise in the world is real

The colors of the autumn Dutch landscape are beautiful and real

This cold is real

This pause for a normal life and vibrant bouquets of dreams is real

This pain here is real. -Journal entry 2017

Thana’s work examines the often desperate plight of refugees fleeing war-torn countries such as her native Yemen. As a refugee with now immigrant status in the Netherlands, Thana’s journey has been nothing short of amazing. Her work and the book created from the journey consider her own position within the experience, but also that of the other refugees that she met along the way staying in the camp in the Netherlands.

She gives first-person insight into the experience and also speaks about the journey from a position of someone who beyond simple empathy, can relate to the stories found within her book, which often comes through writing and her sensitive and solemn portraits. The writing in particular offers incredible insight into the experience. One takes away the sense of waiting in the work and though despondency is never far from such an experience, Thana manages to make the work about the strength of character needed to embark on such a journey. I wholeheartedly believe in her work and the significance of her position to peak about such subject matter. I cannot say that about everyone making work about the European refugee crisis. Please Tune in.

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Music: Algiers, with their full permission

Photograph Credit: Thana Faroq
Editing: Adam Mead
Producer: Lucas Callaghan
Executive Producer: Brad Feuerhelm

Rights are reserved to Nearest Truth. No copies of this content is permitted without express permission from Brad Feuerhelm.

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