BETWEEN US (and everybody else) - 2019 / 2020, Exhibition Red Star Line Museum
In collaboration with Anyuta Wiazemsky Snauwaert
© Ans Brys
In "Destination Sweetheart," an exhibition curated by Red Star Line Museum in 2020, you follow a handful of love migrants. You listen to outpourings and get carried away by stories and objects. Sometimes confrontational and shocking, often moving and intimate. Because love does not usually come without a struggle.
Love migration and family reunification have been the main reasons for legal migration to Belgium over the past fifty years. The Internet, cheap plane tickets, tourism and foreign studies play an important role. On the other hand, there is increasing control of marriages of convenience, and thus the authenticity of relationships. In the expo, you also step into the captivating installation "Between us and everybody else" asks that questions about privacy, intimacy, marriage and the state, being married in 2018 as part of an artistic project on marriage, love and migration and to build on the sustainability of our relationship.
Anyuta obtains papers as a Russian student through marriage. When the project gains publicity through the media, someone files a complaint, suspecting a marriage of convenience. The public prosecutor's office is called in.
The police come to check on their domestic life. Although we do not form a traditional love couple, we convinced the Belgian authorities that we do not have a marriage of convenience. The police file describing our bedroom inspired us to create the installation where we recreated our bedroom in the museum, as described by the police. The work makes one reflect on the sensitive relationships between state, love, intimacy and controls.
Whether it's about moving to an Erasmus sweetheart, a chance encounter while traveling that becomes something more, or a proposed marriage to someone from the homeland, love migration comes in all shapes and sizes. Find out in "Destination Sweetheart" what it means to go so far for love.