Cultural activities

Sea of Shadows

Sea of Shadows Judith Martínez

The Instituto Cervantes Manchester is hosting an exhibition called "Sea of Shadows," inspired by the evacuation to Great Britain of around four thousand Basque girls and boys during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939).

Between March and June of 1937, when the Basque Country was at the epicentre of the conflict, many families from the region made the painful decision to send their children into exile to protect them from death and devastation. Many of these children came to Great Britain. This exhibition recovers previously-unseen photographs and archival materials that bear witness to their lives here.

In addition to honouring the memory of these children and their extraordinary experiences, the exhibition also invites reflection on how their legacy has been passed on to subsequent generations. To illustrate the persistence of memories across generations, the exhibition has commissioned stunning original works by visual artist Judith Martínez Estrada and poet Alicia García-Bergua, herself a descendant of Spanish Civil War exiles. Through images and words, both creators transport us to an evocative realm where affection and the power of emotions prevail.

In collaboration with the University of Birmingham, the University of Reading, BCA’37 UK – The Association for the UK Basque Children, Intxorta 1937 Kultur Elkartea, Gernika Memoriaren Lekuko, People’s History Museum, The Salvation Army, West Glamorgan Archive Service, UKRI (Arts and Humanities Research Council), University of Southampton, Word Music Image and Consulado General de España in Manchester.

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