LONDON, June 2 (UNHCR) – The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and Refugee Week today launch a remarkable exhibition by award-winning Magnum photographer Ian Berry at Glasgow’s Trongate 103 arts centre. ’60 Years 6 Lives’ marks the 60th anniversary of the 1951 Refugee Convention and celebrates the lives of six refugees who have sought sanctuary in the UK in each of the decades since 1951, their photographs telling stories of personal struggle, courage and perseverance.
Refugees have made an enormous contribution to the social, cultural, economic and political life of the UK in last 60 years, and the six individuals profiled in this exhibition are no exception. Having fled conflict in Iraq or Democratic Republic of Congo, religious persecution in Tibet, political violence in Chile and Hungary, or civil war in Bosnia, each of these refugees has gone on to build a new life in the UK and make an outstanding contribution to their adopted country. From award-winning poet to community activist to celebrated musician, the refugees featured in ’60 Years 6 Lives’ have shown resilience and creativity, bringing invaluable skills, experiences and talents that have played a vital part in shaping Britain in the last sixty years.
The 1951 Refugee Convention was drafted in the aftermath of the Second World War to protect the rights of refugees displaced by conflict. Since then, as refugee problems have spread across the globe, the 1951 Refugee Convention remains one of few human rights instruments that can protect, restore dignity and offer sanctuary to millions of people uprooted by war or persecution.
Photographer Ian Berry is known worldwide for his arresting, evocative photos – and as a member of the celebrated cooperative, Magnum Photos. Magnum was formed following the Second World War by pioneers of photo-journalism including Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson. Today its photographers continue to chronicle the world and its people, with a powerful, individual vision.
’60 Years 6 Lives’ is part of UNHCR’s project ’60 Years 60 Lives’ featuring 60 refugees who have made new lives in exile across Europe. They came from Europe, from Asia, Africa and America, but they have one thing in common: European countries gave them a chance to rebuild their lives in peace and freedom.