migrantvoice
Speaking for Ourselves

Michelle Fuller - Changing Lenses

Michelle Fuller - Changing Lenses

MV

 Migrant Voice -
 Migrant Voice - Michelle Fuller - Changing Lenses


Series 1: ‘Self’ we are either forced or choose to move to another country or community. How does this unfamiliar environment with its mindsets about us, affect our opinions about ourselves and our ability to integrate - does our ‘self-talk’ change over time?  
Choosing the positive ‘self-talk’ rather than the negative.

Me
Intelligent
Gifted
Resilient
A Human Being
Native to earth
Tremendous

#M.I.G.R.A.N.T. – This label captures only a finite idea of who I know I am.

 

michelle fuller  changing lenses
 

Part of and clearly identifiable – When drawn/pulled into our new environment, becoming part of it – are we expected to lose our culture, religion, language our whole self to be accepted? Would it make any difference if we did or would we still be treated as ‘them people’ because of the colour of our skin, the tone of our voice or whatever difference tickles the fancy of the prejudice?  

 

michelle fuller  changing lenses

What I say to myself when I am blamed, targeted and freeze out because I am a migrant?
I could hide in the deepest darkest part of my soul and climb into the little cage they want me to build for myself.  But I choose not to. I walk into the light because I find friendship and support there. Then I sit looking up at the sky, remembering who I am - not who I was told I am.  Oh yes! I am remarkably and wonderfully made.

 

 

 


 
Series 2: Targeted:  creating a malignant culture that intentionally erects barriers to prevent integration on one level or another.

 

michelle fuller  changing lenses

 The ‘Hostile Environment’ – the inhumane barriers constructed to debilitate and scar individuals – blocking integration.

 


Series 3: ‘Community’

There are churches, charities, social groups – People who will stand with us, protest for us and support us when we are at our lowest and most desperate.  

michelle fuller  changing lenses

A glimpse of humanity - Hate shouts loudest.  Love, Compassion and Support is always in abundance and it can come from the most unexpected people, places and communities.  This picture represents that humanity which should be found in a Christian country such as the UK.  But is it only found in the pockets of community and not the corridors of power?
(This picture is of a statue at St Martins in the Fields which was created by Chaim Stephenson - to remember all victims of injustice and violence in South Africa during the years of apartheid - dedicated by Archbishop Desmond Tutu in 1994.)

 

michelle fuller  changing lenses

Volunteers  
Sunday ‘International Group’ a time of sharing a hot meal with individuals facing a challenging time of destitution and homelessness in London.  Providing access to laundry and showers, all made possible by the Connections at St Martins in the Fields.

 


Series 4: ‘Abstract’

michelle fuller  changing lenses

Blurred vision: look closely… what do you see?
Is there a clear vision of what integration looks like for all involved? There are many ideas and opinions which make up the picture of what we imagine, but it’s not yet clear.

 

michelle fuller  changing lenses

Under the street light one Sunday at dawn I saw - The Moon.  And you?  
“The moon does not fight. It attacks no one. It does not worry. It does not try to crush others. It keeps to its course, but by its very nature, it gently influences. What other body could pull an entire ocean from shore to shore? The moon is faithful to its nature and its power is never diminished.” - Ming-Dao Deng

 

These photos and accompanying writing were made as part of the Changing Lenses; London stories of Integration project. You can listen to my podcast for the project here: https://soundcloud.com/migrant-voice/michelle-fuller