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Swales & Sinclair

Swales and Sinclair international artists

Since 2008, when both the artists lived in Manila, Chanel Sinclair and David Swales have embarked on several cross-cultural art collaborations.

These include the below exhibitions and projects:

"Selected Recent Works", LSO Gallery, Lubbock, Texas, 2012 Works from Texas, New Mexico, Ukraine, the Maghreb, Middle East and the Balkans.

"The Year After", House of Reeves, Croydon, London, 2012. A wabi-sabi inspired exhibition of recent Islamic world photography. This was held in the iconic House of Reeves 140 year old family business which was infamously destroyed in the London Riots of 2011.

"In the Footsteps of Ibn Battuta". Hungary, Spain, Islamic World, 2012 (as featured in the NOV 2012 issue of Middle East Magazine) At a time of perceived growing hostility between "The West" and the "Islamic World", the artists mounted street exhibitions throughout the current and historical territories of the Islamic world. The purpose was to engage with 'everyday' audiences in shelters, residential neighbourhoods, NGOs and economically challenged/religiously conservative areas and to personally challenge this idea of separations. They actually arrived in North Africa at the time of the growing YouTube video controversy and a few days after the tragic assassination of Chris Stevens, the US Ambassador to Libya. Swales & Sinclair exhibited a parallel cultural "exchange" of wabi-sabi inspired photography from economically marginalised and socially challenged parts of Belfast, London, West Texas and New Mexico.

The artists' journey from Europe to Morocco was dedicated to Beijing Olympic athlete Samia Yusuf, who in early-2012 tragically drowned in the mediterranean while desperately trying to reach Europe to compete in the London Olympics. Her life in Somalia had been marked by remarkable determination in the face of death threats and intimidation from al-Shabab when she returned from Beijing. With the huge resources in contemporary sport it is shocking that this remarkable human being remained unassisted by NGOs when so many others have been helped in achieving resettlement.


Chanel Sinclair


Exhibition Itinerary and Selected Shows:

Budapest, Hungary- several locations incl. the site of the world's most northerly Islamic shrine
Tarifa, Spain (formerly in al-Andalus) - cemetery to anonymous african migrants drowned in the Straits of Gibraltar.
Tangier, Morocco- several locations incl. DARNA Children's Charity & tomb of Ibn Battuta
Fes , Morocco- several locations incl. IPDF Abused Women's' Shelter
Train carriage between Fes and Casablanca
Casablanca, Morocco - several locations
Tunis, Tunisia- Cancelled due to Youtube video riots
Tripoli, Libya - Cancelled due to assassination of Chris Stevens
Benghazi, Libya- Cancelled due to assissination of Chris Stevens. Their Benghazi guide subsequently joined them in Istanbul to escape the instability due to Qatar-funded militias.
Cairo, Egypt- several locations incl. Tahrir Square
Cairo, Egypt- Hope Village Education Charity, Garbage City, Mokkatam
Hurghada, Egypt- several locations
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia- Cancelled due to inability to secure visas
Abu Dhabi, UAE - exhibited to 130 trapped /abused domestic workers trapped in the Philippine Embassy
Amman, Jordan- several locations incl. Arab Women Organisation NGO
Beirut, Lebanon- Cancelled due to sectarian issues. Subsequently on the day we were due to arrive, a bomb exploded in our planned destination of Ashrafieh.
Istanbul, Turkey- Sultan Ahmed and Taksim Square
Sarajevo, Bosnia- several locations incl. IMIC Religious Reconciliation NGO
Swales and Sinclair artwork
"Homage to Capa and Steinbeck", Ukraine & Hungary, 2012 Inspired by the cold-war journeys of Robert Capa and John Steinbeck. The artists connected with 'everyday' audiences by mounting street exhibitions of wabi-sabi inspired photography from Belfast, London and Egypt. These locations included Babi Yar, the site of the single largest massacre of the holocaust, and the 'Free Yulia Tyomoshenko' protest rally in Kiev.

Kiev, Ukraine - several locations Lviv, Ukraine - several locations Budapest, Hungary - several locations

"Challenges in a Mother City", Athens, Greece, 2012 Just before the greek general elections (and between major political and anti-austerity riots) the artists mounted a series of street exhibitions in front of the Greek Parliament, around Syntagma Square and the Exarchia neighbourhood. They specifically chose locations which had been photographed at the heart of previous riots.


"We Love Egypt - Post Revolution Art Tour", 2012 This art engagement project was the artists' statement of solidarity with the "everyday" Egyptian people. At a time of when tourism was collapsing in Egypt's post-revolutionary period they wished to show support and demonstrate that Egypt was still safe to visit.

Luxor - several locations Nile West Bank- several locations Tomb Raider Citadel Hurghada- several locations

Future projects and exhibitions are TBA in Las Vegas, NYC, Houston, London and Singapore.

Swales and Sinclair artists