This is part of a series of ekphrastic poems presented alongside ‘Hyphenated’ at The Substation. ‘Irhil’ responds to Rushdi Anwar’s ‘Irhal (Expel), Hope and the Sorrow of Displacement;



Irhal (Expel), Hope and the Sorrow of Displacement,
2013 – ongoing
Burnt wooden chairs, black pigment and charcoal
Dimensions variable

This work is an installation consisting of burnt chairs. They are installed as an interlocking pile. The chairs are not joined/fixed but placed on top of one another. Weight and gravity hold them up, forming a solid work that stands in the space. Irhal (Expel), Hope and the Sorrow of Displacement meditates on displacement, a concept that affects millions of people around the globe who are forced to flee their homes because of political, social, environmental or economic factors. Discarded objects (chairs) were utilised to explore notions of fragility, uncertainty and limitation that often accompany displacement. The artist has used these commonplace objects (chairs) as a metaphor for “home and place”. Domestic chairs are objects designed for comfort and relaxation, however he has manipulated and transformed the chairs into dysfunctional objects. The chairs have been burnt and deformed, that became a metaphor for the abandonment of “home and place”. The chairs were burnt and transformed into something non-functional. The burnt chairs undermine the feeling of safety and home. This creates a sense of feeling of vulnerability and absence. It suggests a state of absence and presence and acts as a metaphor for the place and displacement.


About the Artist

Rushdi Anwar is a Melbourne-based artist originally from Kurdistan. He is working between Australia and Thailand. His installation, sculpture, painting, photo-painting, and video work often reflect on the socio-political issues of Kurdistan, Iraq and The Middle East. Which exploring these issues through an investigation of form, material vocabulary and processes of making. His works reference the social and political unrest that extend to generate discourse about the status of social equity. His work also have a broader message and talk to us of care, attention and even redemption through art.

He was educated in Kurdistan and Australia studying at the Institute of Kirkuk- Kurdistan, Enmore Design Centre / Sydney Institute- Sydney. He holds a Master of Fine Art (MFA) 2010 and a Doctorate of Philosophy Art (PhD) 2016, in the School of Art in RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

He has held solo and group exhibitions widely in Australia, Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Finland, France, Japan, Kurdistan, Norway, Switzerland, Thailand, and United Arab Emirates.

Eunice Andrada

Author: Eunice Andrada

Eunice Andrada is a Filipina-Australian poet, journalist, lyricist and teaching artist based in Sydney. Featured in The Guardian, CNN International, ABC News and other media, she has performed her poetry in diverse international stages, from the Sydney Opera House and the deserts of Alice Springs to the United Nations Climate Negotiations in Paris. During a residency in Canada's prestigious Banff Centre, she collaborated with award-winning jazz musician and Cirque du Soleil vocalist Malika Tirolien. She has also shared her verses with celebrated composer Andrée Greenwell for the choral project Listen to Me. Eunice co-produced and curated Harana, a series of poetry tours led by Filipina-Australians in response to the Passion and Procession exhibition in the Art Gallery of NSW. Her work has been translated into Tagalog, Hiligaynon, French, Japanese, and Czech, while her poems have appeared in Peril Magazine, Mascara Literary Review, Verity La, Voiceworks, and Deep Water Literary Review, amongst other publications. She was awarded the John Marsden & Hachette Australia Poetry Prize in 2014. In 2016, she was honoured by Australian Poetry as the first of their 30 Under 30 Poets. In 2018, the Amundsen-Scott Station in the South Pole of Antarctica will feature her poetry in a special exhibition on climate change. She was awarded an eco-poetry fellowship by the Australian Poetry and Nature Art and Habitat Residency. 'Flood Damages' is her first book of poetry, available for pre-order now:

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