Nigerian artist marks 100 days of schoolgirl's abduction

Sarah Peace and her installation Chibok 100. Picture: Sarah Peace

Chibok 100 was erected in Little Monk Wood in Epping Forest. Picture: Sarah Peace

The 'figures' are made from bamboo, chicken wire and fabric. Picture: Sarah Peace

First published in Epping Forest
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East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter - Epping Forest

An artist has recorded the passing of 100 days since the kidnap of 230 schoolgirls.

Sarah Peace’s Chibok 100 depicts black veiled ‘figures’ representing the girls abducted by Islamic fundamentalist group Boko Haram on April 14 in north eastern Nigeria.

The installation, made from bamboo and chicken wire, was erected in a 4,000 sq ft clearing in Little Monk Wood, Loughton, with the help of young female volunteers from the Rosebud Centre, a Woolwich based charity which supports girls aged 11 to 19.

 The Nigerian-born artist said: “It was important to place the figures in an atmospheric environment.

"This setting evokes memories of the Sambisa Forest where the missing girls were last seen.

“I was originally going to dress the figures but that would have been to colourful and cheerful because even if the girls were returned their deeply religious communities would not accept them and they would be stigmatised because of what they have been through.

"The grils were forced to convert to Islam and were filmed praying with their heads covered.

"I don't have any faith and couldn't bare to be forced to say 'God is great' that's another reason I think it would hurt so much."

The 25-year-old has now taken the work down with the passing of 100 days coming yesterday but hopes to exhibit the work in other forms in the future.

She said: “I didn’t want to make an obvious statement on the situation but wanted to show it had happened in our time.

“I will hopefully be able to display the figures spread across different locations or project an image on to a building but I haven’t made any firm plans yet.”

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