Kosov@ Serbian girls during AWB art workshops.
Kosov@ Serbian kids display Japanese calligraphy they received from their pen pals or learnt during the workshop.
Kosov@ Albanian kids (south of Kosovska Mitrovitsa) learning "WA"(harmony, peace).
Kosov@ Gorantsy kids, refugees from the south of Kosov@, now in the north part of Kosovska Mitrovitsa.
Serbian kids (north of Kosovska Mitrovitsa) after an ORIGAMI workshop.
The war in Kosov@ caused approximately 800,000 refugees in neighboring Albania and Macedonia. About 200,000 more are still displaced inside ex-Yugoslavia (now Serbia and Montenegro) and thousands are feared dead. The NATO air strikes caused more than 1000 civilian deaths and killed an unknown number of Yugoslav military men.

Despite the presence of 16,000 NATO troops and UN peacekeepers (KFOR), revengeful attacks by returning Albanians caused nearly 200 deaths and 150.000 Serb, Roma (Gypsy), Bosniak and Gorantsy refugees left Kosov@. About 1,500 persons of Serb or Roma (Gypsy) ethnicity and about 3.000 of Albanians are still missing.

Ethnic unrest also spread to the Preshevo valley and the border with Macedonia!

Approximately two million children in ex-Yugoslavia have experienced the horror of war. They not only need medical care, food, water, etc. They also need psychological relief. Although their school process has returned to normalcy, they lack basic school materials.

ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS organized a donation of art supplies and school materials by Japanese children.

Japanese children donated sketchbooks, colored pencils or crayons to an unknown Albanian, Serbian, Gypsy (Roma) or Goranets friend in Kosov@. On the first page Japanese children attached a picture of themselves, made a colorful drawing and written a little message of support and solidarity to their unknown friend.

took during the autumn of 1999 (and will continue bringing) those school materials to children in Kosov@ and will organize painting contests by children.

By donating school supplies (sketchbooks, crayons and colored pencils), Japanese children permitted Kosov@ kids to express themselves freely and render their innocent anti-war impressions. By expressing themselves, children have the opportunity to attain catharsis (spiritual purification) that is probably the most important function of art. Catharsis through art is an essential part of psychological (mental and emotional) healing.

Kosov@ Albanian, Serbian, Montenegrin, Roma (Gypsy), Turk, Bosniak, Gorantsy kids... children of all the ethnicities living in Kosov@ replied with their drawings and messages to their Japanese pen pals. ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS brought those letters back to Japan thus, creating links of friendship between the two countries.

The artistic expression of Japanese children and children who have been victims of war is being collected to promote peace worldwide through post-cards, albums and exhibitions.

ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS is a neutral organization. In this page the spelling Kosov@ (or Kosovo/a) was used in order to guarantee total neutrality. Kosovo is the Serbian name, while Kosova is the Albanian name for the Autonomous region of Kosovo and Metohia in the South of Serbia, ex-Yugoslavia. Mostly inhabited by ethnic Albanians seeking independence, Kosov@ remains a place of high ethnic tension.

ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS has taken a message of peace and reconciliation to the areas of ethnic intolerance and war. Forgiveness and coexistence are, after all, the only long-term solution to those conflicts.

YAMAUCHI Kazuaki is
a member of

Venezuelan artist
Laura Stagno

Artist, sculptor, illustrator.
"I want to transmit and re-create those important things that already exist."
Tokyo 114-0014 Kita-ku, Tabata3-3-10-502, Japan Tel& fax: 81-90-8112-8645
e-mail: pr@artwit.org
I want to make a donation

ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS and ARTISTS OF THE WORLD are on line at http://www.artwit.org
Copyright©1999-2010 ARTISTS WITHOUT BORDERS / ARTISTS OF THE WORLD. All right Reserved. Required IE7/Safari4.0/Firefox3.0/GoogleChrome4.0 or later. Best viewed with 800x600 resolution or higher, high color or true color.