A Conference on Gender and the use of Arts-Based Methods to Understand Conflict, Prevent Violence and Build Peace

The Conference will take place on Zoom, 16-18 November 2021.

In recent years, scholars, policy makers and practitioners have begun to acknowledge the benefits of using arts-based methods for violence prevention, peacebuilding and understanding the impacts of conflict.

However, the ability of arts-based methods to explore gendered experiences of violence and conflict and to prevent and respond to gender harms remain under explored. The Conference aims to address this gap by bringing together artists, academics, activists and representatives from civil society and governments.

The Conference will focus on linking participants across disciplines and backgrounds to highlight the potential of the arts and art-based methods in addressing gender issues in conflict situations and peacebuilding.

Find below the conference schedule (times are GMT)

Tuesday, November 16
9:30-9:45 am

Welcome Address: 

  • Dr Daniele Rugo, Brunel University

  • Dr Kirsten Ainley, Australian National University

  • Dr Sahla Aroussi, Leeds University

9:45-10:45 am 

WE NEED TITLES FOR EACH PARTICIPANT (please see example below) 
Panel: ‘Resistance and Reparation’

Memorialisation Through Art-Making: Possibilities for Reparative Truth-Telling for Women in Sri Lanka and ‘Tools of Resistance: Women and Art in Afghanistan’

  • Chair:

  • Lucy Geddes, Public Interest Advocacy Centre; University of New South Wales

  • Shyamala Gomez, Centre for Equality and Justice, Colombo

  • Maya Weisinger, Program Coordinator, Culture Action Europe

11:15 am-12:30 pm 
Roundtable: ‘Imagining Social Justice’ 


  • Jelke Boesten, Professor of Gender and Development, King’s College London (KCL)
    Chair, co-convenor of King’s Visual and Embodied Methodologies Network

  •  Ivana Bevilacqua, Geography, PhD student, KCL‘Puzzling: The Sensory Politics of Infrastructure’Video, Palestine

  • Mary Anna Vargas, Spanish and Latin American Studies, PhD student, KCL‘Making Song’ Song, Latin American Migrants in London, and Afro-Peruvians in Lima 

  • Andrea Espinoza, Lecturer in Gender and IR, War Studies, KCL‘Portraying indigenous women: Between endurance and resistance’ Archival photography, Ecuador

  • Rosa Heimer, Geography, PhD student, KCL‘Stitching voices, stitching bodies: Latin American survivors mapping coloniality, violence and resistance’ Body mapping, Latin American women in London 

  • Tiffany Fairey, Postdoc Arts and Reconciliation, War Studies, KCL‘The Home Stay Exhibitions’Participatory photography, Rwanda

All works can be viewed here in full process:

And here in a summary-video presentation (approx 40 minutes):


5:00-5:50 pm 
‘In Conversation’

  • Xavier Verhoest, Co-Founder, Art2Be Kenya

  • Nicholas Songora, Executive Director Manyatta Youth Entertainment- MAYE

  • Dr Sahla Aroussi, Leeds University 

6:00-7:30 pm 

Wednesday, November 17

10:00-10:45 am
‘In Conversation’

  • Stephen Oola, Director, Amani Institute of Uganda

  • Dr Kirsten Ainley, Australian National University

11:15 am-12:00 pm

  • ‘Stillbirth: Abstracting the past to rebuild the present’

    • Dr Tinashe Jakwa, University of Western Australia

  • Playback Theatre with Women Affected by Conlict

    • Farah Wardani, Artistic Director, Laban Lactic Culture

3:00-3:45 pm

  • Empowering Women through Arts-Based Methodologies 

    • Chiara Camozzi, Comitato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo dei Popoli  


    • Dr Fathima Azmiya Badurdeen, Technical University of Mombasa

4:30-5:20 pm
‘In Conversation’

  • Guissou Jahangiri, Vice President, International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)

  • Dr Daniele Rugo, Brunel University London




Thursday, November 18


9:30-10:45 am

Roundtable: ‘Revisiting Hidden Narratives on Conflict Related SGBV in Post-Conflict Northern Uganda’ 

  • Amani Institute of Uganda


11:00-11:50 am
Workshop: ‘Imagining Otherwise: Arts Participation and Critical Hope’

  • Dr Aylwyn Walsh, University of Leeds

  • Alex Sutherland, Tshisimani Centre for Activist Education (and UCT ECR)

1:00-1:50 pm
‘In Conversation’

  • Esther Dingemans, director of the Dr. Denis Mukwege Foundation

  • Dr Sahla Aroussi, University of Leeds

2:00-2:30 pm
Poetry Reading 

  • Dr Choman Hardi, American University of Iraq (Sulaimani)

If you have any questions, please get in touch with:
Dr Daniele Rugo on
Dr Sahla Aroussi on
Dr Kirsten Ainley on


For more information on the UKRI GCRF Performing Violence: Engendering Change
project and its contributors, see: