Young Artists create moving portraits of genocide survivor

Oct. 21, 2022

As part of the [Extra]Ordinary Portraits competition, we recently ran a very special portraiture workshop in our studios alongside the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust. Amouna Adam, a survivor of the genocide in Darfur, spoke about her experiences to young artists.

Holocaust Memorial Day workshop

In this incredibly moving film, we hear from the young artists and our tutor, Rachel Mercer, about how they interpreted and reflected Amouna's experiences in their portrait drawings.

Amouna Adam

[Extra]Ordinary Portraits

Spotlighting the extraordinary experiences of ‘ordinary people,' [Extra]Ordinary Portraits is a portrait project and competition open to anyone in the UK aged 25 and under. To enter, all you need to do is create a portrait based on the theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2023: Ordinary People. A stellar judging panel, including acclaimed photographer Rankin, will be selecting up to 30 portraits to be showcased in the UK Commemorative Ceremony for Holocaust Memorial Day 2023. 

Holocaust Memorial Day workshop

Who should I create a portrait of?

HMDT want to see portraits of people whose lives have been affected by any of the themes relating to Holocaust Memorial Day. This includes survivors of the Holocaust or other genocides, people affected by conflict and migration, or people who have been targeted because of their identity. You can read the life story of a Holocaust or genocide survivor on their website and create a portrait of them, or you can choose someone else. Maybe you already know someone from your local community who has a story like this to share. You must explain why you have chosen this person and how they relate to HMDT's work.

How to get started drawing a portrait

Watch tutor and Drawing Year alumna Rachel Mercer give her tips for getting started!

When is the competition deadline?

The competition ends on Monday 5 December 2022. Submit your portrait by midnight on that day to be considered for the competition. However, you can still take part after this date by sharing a photo of your portrait online and using the hashtag #HMDextraordinaryportraits

The HMDT has a ‘Starting points and inspiration’ resource for young people, teachers and youth leaders on their website, if you need some help to get going. Some of their suggested life stories are: Lily EbertGad Beck, and Mussa Uwitonze.

Visit the HMDT website to find out more about the competition. We hope you enjoy drawing your portrait - good luck!