This weekend I am presenting “Voyage à Dakar” at “Regards sur Cours”, an art festival at Gorée island. I developed an installation in the library of a former colonial house, Keur Khadija, which is now used as a children’s home.
The children’s book “Leuk the Hare” written by Senegal’s first president Leopold Sedar Senghor, plays a special role in this installation: former school teacher El Hadji Mbengue, who lives at Gorée and grew up with the stories of Leuk the Hare, is reading the book.
This performance is combined with the projection of silent, poetic images of me and Noah Saliou who, together – against the migration flow – are crossing and connecting two continents.
It is interesting to present the work here in Senegal, where many people have mixed identities and shared their personal stories about Senegal, Africa and (be-)longing. Many people in Senegal know “Leuk the Hare” and shared their favorite stories. Also Noah Saliou’s grandparents came and loved to see the images and to hear the stories.
Photoville invited me to present Voyage à Dakar at their photo festival and offered me one of the 70 sea containers in Brooklyn Bridge Park, right next to the Hudson river, from September 13-23. I created an intimate studio with handwritten texts from my travel itinerary and photos roughly clipped with magnets to the walls of the container.
Also read the articles on Photoville Dutch Talent Featured at Photoville and “immigration more relevant than ever” in the Guardian.
Thanks to: Mondriaan Fund, Paradox, Dutch Culture USA, PHOTOVILLE.
A reunion with our Mercedes in Senegal! We are still in touch with the new owner of the car. Children broke the star from the hood of the car, it is painted grey – blueish, it has a Senegalese number plate and is still strong and running!
In Voyage à Dakar I focus on the connection between Europe and Africa. I took along the stories, but also literally baggage, photo’s and video material for families on both continents. The Senegalese photographer Selle made photo montages for migrants, using my portraits and photo’s from the migrants’ collections.
Inspired by his way of working and curious about collaborating, me and Selle together made a series of collages of film stills from the Amsterdam-Dakar journey.
The installation Soil in my Pocket will open at EYE Film Institute at February 14 and will run till March 7 2017 after sunset.
The première is part of the EYE on art programme with a Q&A on Soil in my Pocket by film critic Anna Abrahams.
Visit the Soil in my Pocket blog.
Soil in my Pocket is an art installation on migration, in collaboration with visual artist Ellert Haitjema. Migration is of all times: early 1900 many Europeans left via the IJ water to South America. Leaving everything behind in Europe, hoping to find a brighter future elsewhere.
It will be a multiscreen installation, both at the outside of the impressive EYE building, along the IJ water as well as at the inside glass facade, overlooking the IJ water. The installation will run from mid February – end of March 2017.
We will collaborate with Miek Zwamborn (text), Peter Claassen (video editing), Lumen Film (production). With the support of the Mondriaan Fund and the Amsterdam Fund of the Arts. The project is a continuation of the projection on the cruise ship, from the quay in front of EYE Film Institute in September 2013.
In the next coming months we will be researching in the archive of EYE Film Institute.
When we arrived in Dakar my son wanted to go home.
We are back in Amsterdam after an amazing 2,5 months trip!
First of November me and my son started our road trip from Amsterdam to Dakar – via France, Spain, Morocco, Western Sahara and Mauritania – in a beautiful Mercedes classic.
We will stay with family and friends along the way, all Senegalese migrants. It is a continuation of Presence in Absence, with a more personal approach.