Installation: Under Canvas

Under Canvas is an installation and audio exploration of stories of childbirth in refugee camps.

Originally commissioned as part of the B!rth Festival, at the Royal Exchange, Manchester in 2016, Take Back Theatre approached 14 writers to respond to the direct stories and research they had collated, both through their own time volunteering within camps in Calais and Dunkirk, and from interviews and stories.

Transforming a tent into an installation, they subsequently worked with textile artist, Laura Faithfull to transform the tent into an installation, with the outer panels based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The tent explores statelessness in refugee camps and the stories of mothers who have given birth.

The tent has also been a part of the Reveal Festival at Bolton Library (in conjunction with Octagon Theatre Bolton); Theatre in The Quarter, Chester (as part of The Lost Boy); a part of the TapRA Conference at University of Salford; and a part of Belonging at Hope Mill Theatre, with University of Manchester Migration Lab.

Want to know more about Take Back Theatre?

“…an astonishing Northern powerhouse of political theatre…” (Manchester Theatre Awards)

Take Back Theatre Collective was set up by actor Julie Hesmondhalgh, writer Becx Harrison and visual artist Grant Archer in October 2015, as an artistic response to the politics of austerity. The original intention was to commission urgent short pieces of theatre, performed script-in-hand, in response to social and political events.


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