Kyra Sacks studied Art and Education at the Utrecht School of the Arts in the Netherlands and Fine Art at the University of Barcelona, Spain. Recently she obtained a master’s degree in Social and Cultural Anthropology at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. Kyra works on a variety of multi-disciplinary projects combining art, anthropology and education, and is driven to explore the possibilities of integrating artistic languages in ethnographic research. In the journal Entanglements she has published a visual account of the recent protests on Lesvos (Greece) alongside a reflexive note in which she poses the question of what place drawing and creative intuition may take in anthropology.

Her work presented here was made during fieldwork within reception facilities for migrants and refugees in Greece over the past year. Contradictions and ambivalent experiences are at the core of daily life in this context, which together form a complex reality that can be considered a dynamic equilibrium as well as an untenable entropy. Intrigued by the daily trivialities she encountered, Kyra made drawings as a way to think through and remember her observations.

“An Afghan family I had become close with invited me along on a picnic. When we found a spot, Miriam, the mother, walked to the water and directed herself towards Mecca. I had become used to seeing her cramped together with her family in their ISO-box in the camp, surrounded by fences, and was therefore struck by this sudden space and openness of the stretched out bay around her.

I could see the mountains and train tracks in the distance that we crossed and followed earlier to get here. As she started to pray, she got on her knees and bowed her head to the ground. For a brief second, she became invisible as her body and dress blended in with the shape and color of the rocks. Moments later she reappeared and reached up into the crisp sky.

In the repetitive movement of her prayer that followed, in which she appeared and disappeared over and over again, I saw a mirror of her ceaseless will to move forward and desire to be noticed, mixed with a profound hopelessness regarding her stagnated, neglected daily reality. Watching her from a distance, I realized how protracted displacement was in many ways drenched in such coinciding contradictions.”