For this year’s Nuart Festival, Mexican artist Said Dokins creates a mural inspired by the experiences of immigrants who have made the journey, through choice or necessary, and settled in the street art city of Stavanger, Norway.
Said Dokins conducted interviews with individuals from Johannes Læringsenter, a resource centre for newly arrived immigrants to Stavanger, as well as speaking to Norwegians about immigrant population in Stavanger. Through conversations with people from such diverse backgrounds Said Dokins explored notions of freedom and belonging.
The resulting text “nærhet/closeness” references how our individual reality is shaped by our environment and how this can be disrupted through displacement and migration.
Inside the word “nærhet/closeness” Said Dokins uses the names and words of the individuals Dokins interviewed during his time in Stavanger to fill in the space.
The names are painted in the artist’s trademark calligraphic style, which combines Japanese calligraphy with pre-phonetic Mexican notation.
The background, half red, half blue, meeting in the middle is a metaphor for the compromise required in order for us all to live in an equal and compassionate society.
The mural can be found on Nedre Banegate 45 in Badedammen, an area in the east of the city where working class and immigrant populations have always traditionally settled, under Belgium artist Roa’s mural.