Art & Migration

By Tate

Art & Migration

By Tate

Visitors from across the world come to Tate Modern to see international art, bringing with them their own life experiences and stories. Migration is a prevalent theme throughout the artworks on display. Artists either address it directly, or we can bring it to a work through our own interpretations. 

Art can be a language shared between individuals, nations, and cultures. It can redeclare identities that have been lost or abandoned when people find new homes. It gives migrant voices a means of being heard in an otherwise unsympathetic world. As we've seen at Tate Exchange with our artists and Associates, art can bring up powerful questions around outsider status, legality, and identity.


The United Kingdom is made up of immigrants and the descendants of immigrants who play important roles in our communities, society, culture and economy. Migrants have often overcome huge obstacles in order to find safety and opportunities here. With so much to share and learn from each other, we offer this reading list to those who wish to learn more or to educate others about the immigrant experience.

Drawn Across Borders: True Stories of Migration

George Butler

£15.00 £14.25

Yinka Shonibare MBE: Revised and Expanded Edition

£35.00 £33.25

The books in Yinka Shonibare’s The British Library carry the names of people with a direct experience of or involvement in the discussion around migration on their spines.

The Journey

Frenci Sanna

£12.99 £12.34

Myself and My Aims: Writings on Art and Criticism

Kurt Schwitters


The German-born artist Kurt Schwitters is best known for his psychological collages and his large-scale sculptures that prefigured the installation art of the late twentieth century. He also experimented with sound art, typography and architecture and wrote poetry and prose. Fleeing the Nazis in 1937, he left Germany for Norway where he was interned on the Lofoten Islands and, after escaping, by the British on the Isle of Man. He died in Kendal in the Lake District in 1948.

All About Love: New Visions

Bell Hooks

£10.99 £10.44

What Is A Refugee?

Elise Gravel



Issa Watanabe

£12.99 £12.34

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