Virtual exhibition - Black Butterflies: Burned Pieces of Life

Virtual exhibition - Black Butterflies: Burned Pieces of Life

Published: Apr 21, 2022 Reading time: 2 minutes

Black butterflies is the name given by survivors to the floating burnt pieces of paper and furniture found in the aftermath of bomb attacks. Unlike shrapnel, shell fragments, and other remnants of war that symbolize war and death, black butterflies are more than that – the traces of a life that no longer exists.

A virtual 3D exhibition hosted by the People in Need and the European Union.

Authors: Manu Brabo and Albert Lores

On the 24th of February 2022, Ukrainians woke up to a full-scale invasion of their country. Since then, countless innocents have been targeted by Russian bombs that are landing on houses and apartments, schools and kindergartens, hospitals and other civilian infrastructure. People in besieged cities are trapped in basements, hiding from bombing, often without access to water, food, healthcare, or the possibility to escape.

Millions of civilians have fled to neighbouring countries. Millions more are displaced within Ukraine, some for the second time in eight years. This full-scale war has led to unimaginable human suffering in a country with an already existing humanitarian crisis since April 2014. Back then, Russian-fostered unrest in eastern Ukraine exploded into violence. That violence has changed the lives of Ukrainians forever, and the violence has not ended. 

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EU humanitarian aid and People in Need

People in Need (PIN) is a Czech-based non-governmental organization. We are a long-standing partner of the EU in humanitarian work in Ukraine. Through EU humanitarian funding, People in Need has supported hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people in eastern Ukraine.

The European Union and its Member States are the world’s leading donors of humanitarian aid. Through its Civil Protection and Humanitarian aid Operations department (ECHO), the European Union helps millions of victims of conflict and disaster every year. With headquarters in Brussels and a global network of field offices, the EU aids the most vulnerable people on the grounds of humanitarian needs.

Funded by the European Union. However, the views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.


Author of the introductory photo: Albert Lores for People in Need

Author: Manu Brabo and Albert Lores

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