Coming events look at migration and exile


Immigrant's burden

Illustration by Pedro X. Molina.

Ithaca City of Asylum (ICOA) is taking part in several community events in November. Each seeks to expand the local conversation on migration, immigration, displacement, and exile. Three are part of the monthlong exhibition and event series How Did We Get Here?.

Organized by the People’s Popup Project, How Did We Get Here? is a community response to the Cornell Johnson Museum’s current show how the light gets in. All events are free and open to the public.

How Did We Get Here?
Exhibition opening
Friday, November 1, 5-8 p.m., CAP ArtSpace Gallery, 110 N. Tioga St., The Commons

Join us for the First Friday Gallery Night opening of How Did We Get Here?, a monthlong exploration of migration, immigration, and displacement in Ithaca and beyond. The exhibition features political cartoons from around the world curated by ICOA artist-in-residence Pedro X. Molina; documentary photography and text from the Their Story is Our Story project; immigration maps of Ithaca; and art from Ithaca College students. Many additional events are scheduled through the month. A full listing is here.

Getting Here: Personal Stories of Immigration, Migration, and Displacement
Storytelling event
Saturday, November 9, 3 p.m., CAP ArtSpace Gallery, 110 N. Tioga St., The Commons

How did you get here? What kind of life did you find? How does it compare to the promise or myth of America? Local residents will tell their personal five-minute migration stories in a Moth-style storytelling event. At the end, host Raza Rumi, former ICOA writer-in-residence and now director of the Park Center for Independent Media, will moderate a Q&A session with the storytellers. The event will later be broadcast on WRFI, the community radio station for Ithaca and Watkins Glen.

Tuesday, November 12, 8 p.m., Barnes Hall, Cornell University

For Jews and Christians, the exile from Paradise is the beginning of history. For Muslims, it is the exile from Mecca. For political dissidents, exile is one of the principal forms of “reeducation,” punishment, or annihilation. Athens-based musician and scholar Kyriakos Kalaitzidis joins Boston’s Pharos Ensemble to present the original work “EXILE” as well as a repertoire of Greek traditional music. Organized by ICOA board member Gail Holst-Warhaft and cosponsored by Cornell’s Institute for European Studies and Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies; Cornell’s departments of music, Near Eastern studies, and religious studies; and Nick Lambrou of Lambrou Real Estate.

Journalism in Exile
Panel discussion
Saturday, November 16, 3 p.m., CAP ArtSpace Gallery, 110 N. Tioga St., The Commons

Journalists Sonali Samarasinghe (Sri Lanka), Raza Rumi (Pakistan), and Pedro X. Molina (Nicaragua) were all deeply involved in their countries’ political life. All were forced to flee under the threat of violence. And all ended up in Ithaca as writers-in-residence with ICOA. In this informal discussion, they share their stories about the challenges and rewards of living, working, and staying connected in a faraway place very different from home. Cosponsored by Buffalo Street Books. A new coffee table book featuring Sonali will be available for purchase.

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