According to The UN Refugee Agency, women and girls make up around 50 per cent of any refugee, internally displaced or stateless population, and those who are unaccompanied, pregnant, heads of households, disabled or elderly are especially vulnerable.
In 2015, more than 21 million people were forced to leave their homes in order to flee from conflicts. The pink house fabricated by the artist Olek with many Syrian and Ukrainian refugees now living in Finland and Sweden, symbolizes a bright future filled with hope and people coming together as a community.
OLEK’s art explores sexuality, feminist ideals and the evolution of communication through colors, conceptual exploration and meticulous detail. OLEK consistently pushes the boundaries between fashion, art, craft and public art, fluidly combining the sculptural and the fanciful. With the old fashion technique of crocheting, she has taken the ephemeral medium of yarn to express everyday occurrences, inspirations and hopes to create a metaphor for the complexity and interconnectedness of our body and psychological processes.
OLEK’s bursts of bright colors often mask political and cultural critiques woven into the fibers of her installations, mirroring her respect for artists and writers. She highlights that which already exists in the current time and environment. As an active supporter of women’s rights, sexual equality, and freedom of expression, OLEK has used the broad appeal of her work to display her solidarity with those stifled by oppressive laws worldwide. Her transformation of public spaces and objects reflects cultural evolution, mirroring the public response, from those watching and from those within the art.
Other works by Olek and Olek Studio
All photographs are by Olek Studio