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The Drawings and Paintings Gallery

On this page we showcase collections of videos, recordings, word art, photographs, and drawings submitted to this project by contributors from many parts of world. They use any medium and means accessible to them, mostly smartphones, to communicate their experiences of the Covid-19 pandemic. Contributions are all from asylum seekers and refugees from many parts of the world.

drawings & paintings

Gardening with Watercolours: the therapeutic value of being creative

Ruth is a mother, wife and a refugee. During lockdown she become unemployed and she felt a deep despair and sadness. She was feeling very isolated not being able to have her “normal” life activities.

Gardening with Watercolours: the therapeutic value of being creative

“She got involved in art classes and discovered the artist inside herself. She explained that her artwork allowed her to explore different ways of getting in touch with others and reducing her anguish. She said “I may not be artist, but I am creative. I am gardening with watercolours”

Covid at first sight

Image courtesy of Andrea Ibarra-Abreu, Venezualan artist and student living in South Wales How does a teenager feel forced into lock down for nearly one year? Is COVID like love at first sight? Or is Covid like a relationship that must inevitably fail? Is COVID here to stay? Should I get used to it? This year looks pretty much same as last one so no tears just more COVID.

COVID planet

Image courtesy of Andrea Ibarra-Abreu, Venezualan artist and student living in South Wales Is our planet a COVID planet? Is Covid just a temporary state or a more permanent condition? I think the COVID scare will have permanent repercussions because, at least for the moment, it seems that the virus has taken over the world. This is a new state (?) Isn’t it? I cannot picture how the world could be the same after pandemic ends, if ever it does.

Fake News and COVID

“The internet has been flooded with lots of fake news about vaccines, medicines, conspiracy theories that left many people even more confused about this very strange virus’’.
Art by Dijwar Ibrahim Siraj

Corona Covid Crown

The dilemma between security vs. freedom is expressed by Deborah Garcia in this beautiful ink art. Deborah is a young Venezuelan artist living in Spain after all her family faced political persecution and fled from Venezuela.


A line drawing showing the immense stress and struggle of being locked in by a young asylum seeking mother, recently moved to a place where she knows no one, is frightened and isolated and cannot access support.


In this moving image a young asylum seeker from Pakistan depicts her sense of confinement by sketching a song bird with its wings bound tight to its body. It is perched on the edge of a diving board.

Loving Horses

Mansoureh (Mahsah) Koohnab fled Iran due to religious persecution (she is a Christian) and has been living in Swansea for the last 10 months awaiting her asylum claim to be processed. “During lockdown many people turned to love and lovemaking, creating romantic atmospheres in their homes with scented candles (sales of which soared). These horses are smiling and looking lovingly at one another as did many who found love again in lockdown while others could only hope and dream for it.”

The Holy Trinity

Like many people, Mahsah had many challenges during lockdown to stay safe and avid giving in to depression.
“Many people also turned to religion during lockdown whether by praying or reflecting on the kind of existential questions addressed differently in different religions. Here we see an image of the Holy Trinity emerging from the crucifix.”

Dancing with my daughter

Mahsah had to leave her 6-year old daughter behind in Iran when she fled. This leaves an intolerable sense of pain from which painting only provides temporary relief. Here we see Mahsah dancing with her daughter. Her daughter reaches out for her mother while Mahsah’s hands are reaching up to the sky searching for freedom. This is their shared tragedy.

Woman in headdress

After she was given paints by Jill Duarte at the Africa Community Centre, the pleasures of painting helped her cope. These are Maseh’s lockdown paintings in which she explores the many regions of her imagination through painting, capturing fantasies, dreams and nightmares. “The woman’s eyes are covered, shedding blood for tears yet the face adorned with a magnificent colourful crown.”

Pink flowers block print

Neja is a gifted young artist. She is a member of the Kids Art Club (see blog) that meets on Zoom every Saturday since lockdown. Her work combines a deftness of draughtsmanship, a sensitivity to colour and a skill in manging materials well beyond her age. On this website you will see many such gifted artists and creative people whose work we celebrate.