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The central point in all my works is still the home. Home was burning because of war. That was on top of my mind while I navigated through [everything] in Delhi.
Meet the Comics Artist Who Draws War in Meticulous Detail | War Is Boring
I could not sleep or share my trauma with anyone. When I came to Delhi, people here had sympathy towards Sri Lankans. They respected and looked at us as foreigners.
But they did not know what was happening in Sri Lanka or the politics. They were more concerned about Pakistan. There was no telephone, and letters would take at least three months to reach Jaffna.
So I did not bother writing. There was no one I could share my feelings with. I began to express my anguish and trauma through my paintings. My own body became a reference for my painting, my own story started coming out in symbolic way as an image. It was not a conscious decision, I was just finding a way to exist through painting. Sananthanan When did you start working on memories and war? The aspiration for a separate land or a separate identity linked with my own identity and with that of my community.
My works were either related to trauma or archiving. All these things were not planned. I was reacting to the situation and my work reflects that. Opportunities and challenges before me pushed my art practice. That is how in the last 20 years, home or self has been a major point.
Byimmediately after the war ended, we saw how those in the power, who won the war, started rewriting history.
The burial grounds of the cadres of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam were cleared, government officials were celebrating war victories in public spaces when the Tamils were mourning the loss of their loved ones.
This clearly showed that the country was divided. Questions as to what kind of a country we were living in appeared. In this whole narration of the Sinhala nationalist or Tamil nationalists, the voice of public was not recorded. They were the ones who carried the burnt of the war. They are repositories of stories of surviving the war and resistance So, we started collecting objects — memories of the war — from houses. We started trying to preserve the memories and experiences of war in the project The Incomplete Thombu.
This project records the stories that removed civilians from their homes and the memories that they took with them. Through this project, we examine the subject of displacement through a series of drawings that overlay ground plans of houses drawn from memory by displaced Tamil-speaking civilians. That is how I entered the realm of art history as well. It was not a conscious decision. This cabinet has 30 drawers and each drawer has a card that contain narratives, drawings and photographs of people who survived the war.
These narratives provide a glimpse into the lives of common people, how they creatively used their limited means during the economic embargo or when they were displaced, and during times of censorship.
Here is a sample from the collection of stories between the period of and in Jaffna in Sri Lanka. I was a small child when we were displaced in We walked nearly 15 km to reach Jaffna. My family members carried household things that were portable.
Since I was small they told me to carry my pet puppy. I carried him because he was too small to walk that distance. A few days after we reached Jaffna the puppy died… 2.
We got notice to leave our village without delay because of the advance of government troops. My grandfather could not bear it. He died that same day. We left the village immediately after his body was cremated. It is hard to nurture a jasmine creeper in the heavy winter of Toronto. I covered the plant with a blanket and kept it inside the house. Last summer it yielded four flowers. Their fragrance brought me back to my Jaffna house. We had to leave our house because of the advancement of troops in My father carefully locked the doors and brought all the keys with him, with the hope of return.
Now, almost 20 years have gone by, and my father passed away a few years back, without seeing his house. We still have the keys of the house even though it, and my father, no longer exist. I have my ancestral house in Jaffna. Now it is a military training camp. Once when my family visited, we received guest treatment in our own house. We sat in our drawing room tasting cool drinks and biscuits.
Later, when I attempted to see the house, my request was rejected on the grounds that I did not have the right. Now I am living in Toronto with my family but my childhood memories are more closely associated with our house in Jaffna…. There is no trace of my house now.
I used to look at my empty land from Canada using Google maps… 7. My father died when we were small. My mother struggled to feed seven children.
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I stared working in the paddy fields when I was eight years old. My elder brother who was helping my mother to raise the family was shot dead by the Indian army. My elder sister is married and living in Switzerland and my younger brother is in France. Now I work as a University lecturer in Jaffna. One of my sisters was an LTTE cadre and was killed in during a military operation.
My other two sisters are married. One of them was badly injured in the last phase of the Vanni war. The house that I live in now came under an air attack in It was the first night air raid by the government. Everything in the house was destroyed. I lost all my toys that I had kept since I was a child and all the glass bangles that I had kept in wooden boxes. I have since rebuilt my house but there are no toys and bangles to call it home.
Since the late 80s due to heavy shelling from the Palay air base. We had to move out of our house many times and stay in neighbouring villages. During the time of our final expulsion inwe were in the process of building a new house. One of the most disturbing incidents during the expulsion was that we could not take our pregnant Jersey cow with us.
We had no option other than to abandon her in our cattle shed. We never knew what happened to her. I have resettled in our own house after nearly twenty years. I was displaced to Puttalam. Everything has changed here. My street does not look like it did before. Most of those who were displaced have yet to return… Even in the refugee camps in Puttalam we lived with our relatives and friends.
Now I am living with strangers. I am a stranger on my own street. Shreen and sand bags Sand bags were crucial during the war to protect us from aerial bombing and sniper attacks. Fertilizer bags and hessian sacks were commonly used for making sand bags.
But in the last phase of war there was a heavy shortage of these sacks because people did not carry them when they were displaced. People who were trapped in the final days of war were displaced many times. With every displacement the number of things that could be carried become less and less. People carried items that were needed for their day-to-day survival and items that had sentimental value. They sold their gold jewellery during different stages of displacement to purchase food items such as rice, coconut and milk powder for children.
Most of the married women carried their bridal saris, their most precious property, especially for their sentimental value. To safeguard themselves and their families from the shelling and air raids, they gave their expensive silk bridal saris with gold and silver thread to make sand bags.
Sananthanan Sivaraj and the radio The distance between Jaffna and Colombo is km and it is nearly hours away by train or bus. But still I think the word should be censored seeing how it can be offensive for some people. Also the paint is a faded grayish light-green to me. The color of his van which is green is not an irony unless Valve says so, because otherwise, it'd be just "speculation on the artist's intentions", as said in an undo edit summary.
The swear word shouldn't be censored, as Valve meant it to reference the expression. I ask you to read the edit summaries for undoes of your edits before adding them back again or discussing about them. I mean, stuff like "shit" and "crap" is okay, but please. I've seen it used on text before. I will keep fixing it whenever I see it changed.
Chances are the adolescents' childhood is already ruined. They are undone for a reason. It is especially bad when you undo an undone edit that was done by a staff member or a mod.
Meet the Tamil artist who is preserving memories of ‘surviving the war’ in Sri Lanka
As for the "swearing" issue, that rule is meant so that people will use proper language on other users' talk pages and for them to avoid using the language inappropriately in the normal wiki pages. For this page, it is not being used inappropriately. That's just pointing out a fact, and is not being disrepectful. Just a small inconsistency but not enough to note.
Since I've watched this "Meet the How could this reference possibly be missed for so long? Plus that exact phrase can literally be a reference to anything that quotes it.