For the 130th man on Manus Island

On behalf of the 130th man on Manus Island, I present a second artwork of Mr Sha Sarwari. "Silent Conversation" is an installation of 1975 blank postcards. It was exhibited at Walker Street Gallery in Melbourne where it was awarded the national Home and Art prize. 

Hazara refugee Sha Sarwari with his floor-based installation Silent Conversation, featuring 1,975 blank postcards. Photograph: Michael Cranfield

Hazara refugee Sha Sarwari with his floor-based installation Silent Conversation, featuring 1,975 blank postcards. Photograph: Michael Cranfield

In the course of developing the artwork Mr Sarwari reflected on the meaning of seeking asylum when he was told by another Australian that "we welcome refugees but they should stay in their home country and build their own country ... it should not always be an option to leave, to run away." Mr Sarwari's response is:

But I don’t call it ‘running away’. By leaving, I say no to war, no to killing, no to destruction.
I think violence and fighting and killing will get you nowhere. It will keep going and going, especially where I come from, where the basic infrastructure of life in terms of values and the fabric of society is broken.
If I was back home, let’s say, to stay as that person said, to protect my life, I would be killed or kill someone. To me, not doing that is a contribution towards peace.
By leaving the country, I think all refugees, they’re not only seeking peace and protection. They are contributing towards peace and freedom.
— https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/jul/14/sha-sarwari-australia-refugee-artists-blank-postcards-attitudes-asylum-seekers

Mr Turnbull, Australia needs these people who are committed to contributing towards peace and freedom. Close offshore detention and bring the refugees on Manus Island and Nauru here.