Bottled Refugee Tears

In June 2022 the UK Government attempted to deport refugees to Rwanda. The aim was to deter individuals and families from crossing the English Channel from France by threatening deportation to a land 4,376 miles away (this air travel distance is equal to 7,042 km).

My instinct was to think how I would react to such a situation and how to represent the anxiety and pain the refugees must have experienced.

Tears hold all our emotions, both happy and sad. Often held back and occasionally involuntarily bursting out in an uncontrollable wave of grief or torment. A scarce resource and a fitting icon to represent the plight of the individuals and families fleeing conflict, poverty and climate change.

This is what makes the work darker than I first imagined.

Tears represent strong, intense emotions, along with the deportees tears of fear and pain could it be that the opposite emotions were playing out in Government and elsewhere?

Bottled Refugee Tears (2022)
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Human Tears (facsimile), volume variable
Glass bottle with cork stopper
Velvet Drawstring Gift Bag

Editions determined by the number of deportees on the first flight to Rwanda