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All We Can Do – portraiture project

In Spring 2023, our Participation team worked with women navigating the challenges of homelessness in an innovative photography project. 

Residents of the Chara Centre and Elder Street, who are part of our All We Can Do project, worked with Citizens Theatre staff and photographer Karen Gordon to explore themes of identity and self-expression. 

Through photography and image, the project explored public perceptions around homelessness. The women who participated in the sessions had creative autonomy over how they wished to be portrayed and had the opportunity to express their identity of being a woman in the homeless sector. 

Artist Rachel Mimiec curated an exhibition of the photographs titled ‘Do you see me’? The exhibition was a profound exploration, challenging viewers with provocations such as ‘What does homelessness look like?’ and ‘What did you see when you saw me?’. 

An older woman is sitting facing the camera and looking straight on. She has short grey hair. She has a neutral expression. She is wearing a bright orange sports top with a half zip and long sleeves.
A woman sits looking directly at the camera. She is sitting in front of a white background. She has her dark hair pulled tightly into a bun on the top of her head. She is wearing a light brown knitted jumper and pink leggings.

The carefully crafted images, accompanied by narratives, aimed to challenge prevailing myths and dismantle the stigma associated with homelessness. By presenting candid depictions of a diverse array of women, the exhibition encouraged viewers to see beyond societal labels and recognize the individuality of those who experienced homelessness. 

The exhibition took place at both the Chara Centre and Elder Street on 29 and 30 March 2023. 

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