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Young artists are splashing color back onto Mosul

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Young artists are splashing color back onto Mosul

Young artists are splashing color back onto Mosul

A group of students and artists are breathing new life onto the walls of shelled buildings around the Iraqi city of Mosul through painting.

Maha Albadrawi reports.


Young artists are splashing color back onto Mosul

The war-torn Iraqi city of Mosul is getting an injection of life and colour by a group of young artists.

The group, called "Art Revolution", was formed in early 2018 by university students and young artists, soon after Islamic State militants were driven out by Iraqi forces.

Says team member Shayma Omar.

(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) FINE ARTS STUDENT AND MEMBER OF "ART REVOLUTION" TEAM, SHAYMA OMAR, SAYING: "We saw that the city is full of destruction.

We were wondering about our duty toward the city as artists.

We grouped as young men and women from Mosul and we formed this team... The area needs hope and life, especially that some children are somewhat depressed.

There is no life in this area.

We try, with these paintings, to bring life and happiness back to the city." Mosul fell under the control of Islamic State in June 2014.

The militant group ravaged and looted the areas they occupied, before being driven out during the battle of Mosul in 2017.

During that time, many of city's landmarks were destroyed, including the Great Mosque of Al-Nuri.

But since then, residents like Najim Nashwan have been returning.

(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT, NAJIM NASHWAN, SAYING: "I returned back a year and half ago, I'm the second person to come back to the area of the Great Mosque.

Since I came back, the traces of destruction are still in our minds, we are still troubled.

Our children feel bad and now they see such beautiful paintings that spread optimism.

The paintings make us feel that another life is going to start and that life goes on." The group's most recent project targets the walls of residential buildings in the Ammu al-Baqal neighbourhood of the Old City, which saw some of the worst fighting.

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