The stories in the new Imago Mundi collection that make the exhibition Out of Place. Art and Stories from the World’s Refugee Camps come to life tell us of a profound complexity. Among them is the story of Mohamed Keita, a photographer living in Italy, where he arrived at the age of 17 from the Ivory Coast, after a journey of 8,000 km.

Keita is the author who, having crossed a migration maze that lasted three years, can now guide us. His art recreates the labyrinth, along with the words of journalist and writer Luca Attanasio, who has been working on the subject of forced migration for decades with field research from EU borders to Lebanon, from Calais to Tunisia to Italian reception centres.

We encounter 15 individual stories of men and women (15 of which are on display in the exhibition) forced to live through enormous risks and fears, but who have brought to us understandings of complex worlds, skills, human assets, and even economic advantages.  They are certainly victims, but after going through all sorts of trials, they have emerged stronger on the other side.

Visitors are invited to walk through the labyrinth and encouraged to connect with the stories, to grasp this vast richness.


Mohamed Keita (1993, Ivory Coast) lives in Rome. He founded two photography schools for girls and boys: in Bamako (Mali) and in Rome. In 2022, he won the PhC photography prize, presented by J. Koudelka and M. Delogu.

Luca Attanasio (Rome), writer, journalist; contributes regularly to (among others) Domani, Atlante Geopolitico Treccani, Agenzia Fides, La Svolta, and Linkiesta. An expert on migration phenomena, geopolitics, Middle Eastern countries and Sub-Saharan Africa, he is the author of several publications. 

Project coordination by Chiara Longhi.

Thanks to: IntegrART Social Promotion Association, Treviso; Casetta Rossa Italian School for Foreigners, Rome; Sarai Onlus Association; Obiettivo Fanciullo Odv Guardianship Association.

Some names and facts have been changed to protect those involved.