Welcome. Two syllables that sound like a promise of meeting, of hospitality. Not for refugees. In our Western societies, the reception of exiles leads to confinement, surveillance and an absence of perspective for those who are uprooted.

For several years, the Nimis groupe has been investigating issues around migration. In 2016, their first show, Ceux que j’ai rencontrés ne m’ont peut-être pas vu, questioned the European Union’s migration policies and their economic implications. With Portraits sans paysage, the collective examines the confinement systems for foreigners and dissects the inner workings of the humanitarian work that takes place in most camps around the world. Even in the least restrictive options – such as open centres – the fate of exiles often involves deprivation of liberty. The foreigner is hidden from view, knowingly placed in the blind spot of our democracies. But the management of these organisations is not disinterested, because humanitarian aid, not without cynicism, has become a business like any other. In an attempt to optimise this aid, to make it supposedly more efficient, digital and biometric devices are now being deployed in the camps by companies winning contracts. The human is erased to make way for data collection.

Through theatrical investigation, Portraits sans paysage will bring together testimonies and speeches on stage. The work will scrutinise the system of these camps from the inside while listening to people familiar with them: detainees, exiles, social workers, humanitarian workers (NGOs or UNHCR), lawyers, psychologists, police officers, but also volunteers, hosts.


  • Concept
    Nimis groupe

    Writing, directing and performance
    Jeddou Abdel Wahab
    David Botbol
    Pierrick De Luca
    Tiguidanké Diallo Tillman
    Fatou Hane
    Yaël Steinmann
    Anne-Sophie Sterck
    Sarah Testa
    Anja Tillberg

    Assistant director
    Ferdinand Despy

    Val Macé

    Light design and Technical Director
    Nicolas Marty

    Sound design
    Florent Arsac

    Outside view
    Jérôme de Falloise
    Romain David

  • Artistic collaboration and Dramaturgy
    Marie Cosnay
    Léa Macias
    Hassan Yassin

    Cultural affair 
    Marion Lory

    Management, production and touring
    Catherine Hance
    Aurélie Curti
    Laetitia Noldé

    Création Studio Théâtre National Wallonie-Bruxelles

    Nimis / Wirikuta Asbl

    Théâtre National Wallonie-Bruxelles, Mars - Mons arts de la scène, Théâtre Jean Vilar de Vitry- sur-Seine, Maison de la Culture de Tournai, L’Ancre - Théâtre Royal, le Réel Enjeu (Théâtre Jean Vilar de Vitry-sur-Seine, Théâtre Le 140, L’Ancre - Théâtre Royal, Théâtre de La Cité à Marseille, Théâtre des Doms à Avignon, Le Forum Jacques Prévert à Carros, Théâtre La Renaissance à Mondeville)

    With support from
    Zoo théâtre et Arsenic2