COMMON KESTREL by HANADI CHAWAF
From Monday May 15 to Wednesday May 17, the Hamburg edition of the “YOUR BIRDS, OUR BIRDS” project, an international initiative of the creative European project ACT – Art, Climate, Transition, took place in the Kampnagel Theater.
Hanadi Chawaf was born and raised in Damascus, Syria, where (in her own words) she “learned to love her family, appreciate good food, tolerate very hot weather, and fear a corrupt government.” As a young woman, she “left family and good food behind to escape brutal dictatorship and pursue her future”. She emigrated to the United States where she studied fine arts and illustration. Today she lives in Hamburg and works with “Hanadi’s Garage” as an artist, illustrator and tattoo artist. In her work, she interprets, modernizes and remixes – with humor and politics – motifs and symbols from her ancient homeland. As an artist, she is currently participating in the exhibition “Be with the Revolution” at the “Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe (MK&G)”, in Hamburg. This one which highlights the role of street art and graphic design in the protests that have been taking place in the Arab world since 2011. She has already done two editions of INK ABOUT IT, which is in close collaboration with Kampnagel and Hamburg’s first feminist tattoo convention. In Kampnagel she also led several workshops for children and young people.
During the three-day holiday workshop, led by street artist, tattoo artist and graphic designer Hanadi Chawaf (@hanadisgarage), a group of young people transformed one of the exterior walls of the theater into a work of art politics: a wall painting depicting endangered birds here and now in Hamburg.
Sarah Plochl, a Hamburg-based theater educator and trainer, gave attendees an introduction to native birds and their natural habitats. She addressed threats to biodiversity from climate change, urbanization and human encroachment on protected areas. Participants then collectively chose some of the endangered birds as motifs for the mural, which now serves as a tangible reminder of the urgent need for conservation in the face of climate change.