Encountering Fife: Photographs of Migrant Experiences in Scotland

Exhibition at Dunfermline Carnegie Library and Galleries, 20th January to 14th April 2019

Transcribed Visitor Comments

This exhibition makes me think a lot about migrant experiences; in particular the loneliness they may at first experience. Reinforces my ambition to keep smiling at everyone who looks different to me! David

It’s so good to read that they all find Scottish people friendly.

Free classes for all to help to mixes everyone together [sic]. For example: cooking classes so we can all learn more about each others cooking habits & culture [sic].

I didn’t know that water could spread diseases and be dirty. I appreciate my clean water from the tap. [Child’s handwriting]

To help combat the problem of British & migrants interacting with each other: free groups could be set up where everyone can learn about each others culture & language (ie learn how to speak there language while they learn ours) [sic]. Sometimes its not [that] you don’t want to mix just not sure how?

Very good exhibition.

Thank you for producing such an interesting and insightful exhibition. I hope you have been warmly welcomed & settled into your new life in Scotland!

How wonderful to see Fifers making their new arrivals welcome! This is very inspiring for the future. Steve

How inspiring to hear how these young people have embraced the culture and made a new life. How lucky we are in Fife not to know war, strife, misplacement. Welcome to our safe country.

It makes me so proud, as a Scot, to see that the folk in this exhibition have had a warm welcome from our wee country.

Encountering Fife – This is by far the best exhibition I have seen in this space! I love that this has been a learning process for students & migrant participants gaining valuable experience in developing a show. More so, a learning experience for us, the public, to put ourselves in your shoes – experience Fife as you do. Stop. Breathe. Take in the beauty. Well done to you for your photography & thoughts. Feras Haj Yousef, I hope you do make friends here in Scotland. Love and best wishes to you & all participants. Susan

I liked the ethos of this exhibition. …if people who weren’t migrants could think ‘like’ a migrant even for one day, our society might be better for it. Sharing perspectives through visual arts can help identify how similar our own is to others.

Love seeing the Scottish / Vietnamese fusion food and that Naila enjoyed a fish supper. Thanks to Feras for pointing out how lucky we are to have peaceful streets.

Love your pictures. Thank you for helping me appreciate my beautiful country by viewing through new eyes. May your time here be welcoming, warm and safe.

Very good exhibition. We take for granted our surroundings. Good to hear people talking about their perceptions and experiences. Welcome to Fife.

This exhibition reminds me of how lucky I am to live in Fife. Also to appreciate the talents of young migrants feeling safe.

To Marwa. I’m so glad your little girl is safe and happy in Scotland. Love Aria and Mum. Aria is 5 and is from Burntisland.

Here in Scotland we take so much for granted: clean water, light, green grass, safe streets… This exhibition reminds us powerfully to appreciate what we have, work to improve it and welcome others here to enjoy it with us. CR

The project Encountering Fife – Photographs of Migrant Experiences in Scotland. Jan. 24th 2019. This exhibition was very interesting & well presented. Many aspects of our life in Scotland such as fresh water, electricity, gardens, peace etc. are appreciated by the migrants. I hope these migrants encourage others to embrace & protect Scottish values. P. Brown

I’m also from another country. I’m from England. I’m really pleased that the migrants said that locals made them welcome, as I have found the same. I found the accounts very moving.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts & photographs. Your own stories, hopes, fears, joys and expectations exactly match those of the Syrian refugee families I work with in Shropshire. Welcome / Marhaba to Scotland / UK. I hope you find happiness in your new home.

We are lucky to have the country we do with its natural beauty together with places like this. I am proud to be Scottish[,] proud to bring up my family in a beautiful place.

I am glad I came to the exhibition. We don’t know how lucky we are in Scotland, we complain about the weather but it gives us water and plants. Thank you for showing me that! It is sad that many migrants have difficulty meeting and matching friends from here, the host country. We should think about how we can change that together.

We are all migrants because our soul comes from Cosmos… From an Armenian girl. LOVE. Sonia

Refugees shouldn’t need to be brave or show they are “just like us” to deserve to live here freely and have our respect.

I would be interested to see migrants feel more able to express mundane and negative experiences. I like that it is included here – “what is most difficult”, etc. Migrants are under too much pressure to praise their new countries, even when they experience dehumanisation here.

So proud as a Fifer that we are making refugees of war and suffering welcome here. Bruce

A great idea. It really opened my eyes to think that we definitely take for granted eg water, light etc on demand. Also we gripe about our weather but it gives us the greenness & colours that others appreciate from more arid climates.

My heart goes out to people who literally lose everything and then bravely start a new life. Lesley

Fabulous photographs capturing the spectacular and special sights of Scotland and the ordinary & everyday that we regretfully so often take for granted. Thank you – you have made me think. With love – bless you all.

Scots should appreciate what they have living in a stable, wealthy, beautiful country.

A lovely exhibition. Beautiful pictures and an insight into the change in cultures. Wish you a happy time in Scotland.