documenting worlds
photography by annie appel
film-based work *
Refugee, (Germany 2016)*

23 May 2016

Their eyes spoke of hope and fear. Of exhaustion
and relief. Of strength and faith and courage. Of
determination. A testimony to their bravery at
having arrived in Germany, safe at last from war
and rape and torture. They had no choice except to
exchange their beloved country, now in ruins, for
foreign lands far from home. No option left but to
adopt a new language and a new culture that most
had never imagined choosing.

As a child I watched newsreels of soldiers carrying
survivors too weak to walk after being liberated
from concentration camps. This place, that gave
rise to Hitler, is now a safe haven, two generations
later, as descendants from the Nazis voted to
accept one million civilians fleeing for their lives
from the many wars my country continuously
helps to precipitate. News across the globe began
comparing the current political climate to the fascist
era in Germany as candidate Trump campaigns,
amidst cheering fans, with promises of building
border walls and promises to deport eleven million
immigrants - the largest deportation in U.S. history.

"You have to understand, that no one puts their
children in a boat unless the water is safer than the
Warsan Shire

(each person photographed received an instant print
in gratitude for their willingness to share)