For the thirst time we heard about Chad Evans in 2007 when we commenced cooperation with various organizations working with the Roma community in the Czech Republic. Various people showed us the album comprising white and black portrait photos of the Czech Romanis. Most people, who spent even a little while in the Czech Republic, must be aware of the situation of the Roma minority in this country. However, the album seemed to be from different time and place. The Roma, presented in the album, were people of success: lawyers, doctors, university employees, teachers, businessmen, and students. The album, comprising collection of photographs and short personal interviews, constituted an astonishing outcome of Chad’s work.
When we met Chad in Wrocław, in 2008, while he was presenting his work to the inhabitants of Wrocław, Chad underlined the importance of one debatable issue. According to him, the situation of Romanis in Europe and the path they will have to blaze is analogous to the situation of African-Americans in the USA in the second half of the 20th century. Everyone who is a bit interested in history is aware of a fundamental shift towards the situation of this community in the USA in the last decades. From segregation, isolation and resentment in the second half of the previous century to the first black President Barack Obama. We are enjoying the times when, as Wyatt says himself: „instead of being judged by the colour of my skin and origin, I am evaluated on the basis of performed work”.
Over the years our cooperation with Chad Evans Wyatt has resulted in a unique exhibition of the Roma living in the "Visegrad countries". In the years 2010 - 2012 we traveled thousands kilometers across Europe, visited hundreds of places, we were able to meet, talk and take pictures of almost 150 people. The exhibition consists of over 200 photographs of Roma from Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia.
We sure that the Foundation’s cooperation with Chad produced unforgettable and unique outcome – the exhibition breaking down stereotypes and insisting on making time for reflection.
More about the exhibition and the author: www.romarising.com
The exhibition was also inspired to social campaign: www.jednizwielu.pl