A RIGHTFUL PLACE
photo credits: Michael Bell
— Michael Bell —
A Rightful Place is a year long multidisciplinary art and social justice project, in which the lives and migration experiences faced by newcomers were documented through portraits and personal narratives. These will be presented in comprehensive exhibitions in numerous locations throughout the province next year.
Migration is central to the human experience. Throughout history, people have undertaken significant migrations that have shaped the world we now live in. These journeys are made in hope and exploration, as well as journeys made by force or desperation. Today, migration undertaken for the former reasons is especially prevalent, with thousands of refugees endangering their lives fleeing war-torn countries in the hope of finding a safe, secure, peaceful place to call home and raise their family.
- Michael Bell
- Moose Jaw
- North Battleford
- Prince Albert
- Swift Current
# of Participants
KM Driven by Artistic Director
- Regina and Saskatoon Open Door Societies
- Moose Jaw, Swift Current, Estevan, Yorkton, and Prince Albert Newcomer Welcome Societies.
- Battlefords Immigration Resource Centre
- Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan
I am a photographer and photojournalist based in Regina.
This project was my first time creating work with the potential for broader social impact. As the first photo shoot approached, it occurred to me that I needed some way to connect with the participants to capture an honest moment. I started with a conversation. This helped me to understand each person’s personality, disposition, and story, which gave me visual ideas, at which point I asked their permission to start taking photographs.
I was nervous, but my fear evaporated when I met Afghan journalist, Abdulhai, at our first shoot. He was humble, joyful, charismatic, and so comfortable in front of the camera. His portraits are still among my favourite.
It’s been a privilege to meet new (and sometimes not-so-new) Canadians from all over the world, living all over Saskatchewan.