Street artists mark Peace Day with global series of murals

International Alert is marking the UN International Day of Peace on 21 September with a series of street art mural paintings in countries affected by conflict around the world.

Street artists will work together with local communities to produce large-scale peace-themed murals in a number of cities: Beirut (Lebanon), Berdyansk (Ukraine), Davao City (Philippines), Goma (Democratic Republic of Congo), Kampala (Uganda), as well as in London (UK).

Most of the countries taking part have struggled with conflict in recent times. Berdyansk in south-eastern Ukraine lies close to the Donetsk and Lugansk regions and hosts many refugees fleeing the conflict there. Fighting in DRC continues despite numerous peace agreements, with Goma located by the Rwandan border where relations are particularly tense.

After decades of conflict, Uganda is now a relatively peaceful country. But there remain some challenges, including hostility between DRC and neighbouring Rwanda over the discovery of oil, while Kampala, the Ugandan capital, has experienced riots which have greatly disrupted local life.

In Lebanon, the refugee crisis continues to put pressure on the country and its people, so the need to support both refugees and host community relations is pressing.

And despite recent progress with peace talks in the Philippines, two major conflicts t continue to affect the country.

Artists have worked together with local students and community groups to identify themes for the paintings, which will all reflect different challenges and hopes for their own cities and countries.

All paintings will be livestreamed on social media through the hashtag #ART4PEACE, and can be followed via International Alert’s Twitter and Facebook pages.

The events are part of Alert’s #ART4PEACE campaign, which uses art to spark interest and awareness in global issues. They are the opening activities for this year’s Talking Peace Festival – a fortnight of creative events designed to kick-start conversations about prospects for peace around the world.

NOTES TO EDITORS

Dates and times:

Location

Date

Start time (BST)

Berdyansk, Ukraine

Wednesday 21 September

7am

Beirut, Lebanon

Wednesday 21 September

8am

Davao City, Philippines

Wednesday 21 September, with a digital mural to be unveiled on the Cyber Peace Project website on Friday 23 September

8am

Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

Wednesday 21 September

9am

London, UK (at House of Vans, Waterloo)

Wednesday 21 September

6pm

Kampala, Uganda

Saturday 24 September

TBC (spanning 3-4 days)

Website: http://talkingpeacefestival.org/art/

Social media tag: #ART4PEACE

Photo credit: International Alert / Sal Alexander