The Brazilian quilombos were settlements of former slaves who had escaped the clutches of the landowners who had forced them to work on their plantations. The residents embraced ideas of social equality and self-organised to implement democratic structures. Through their processes of negotiation, they eventually developed the egalitarian philosophy of Quilombismo. The first project produced under the new general theatre director Soh Bejeng Ndikung at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt spotlights Quilombismo as a starting point for a broad investigation of global, self-established free spaces, and presents it as a possible path to overcoming cultural colonisation.
The project’s events will focus on five thematic areas: the political structures of the quilombos and similar spaces, forms of resistance, languages, architecture, and the forms of knowledge production and communication of Quilombismo. An exhibition will present a selection of historical documents of escaped slaves from various countries. The displays will include images and acoustic languages, weaving and ceramic arts, body markings and medical views of the body, as well as various techniques used to preserve memories, ceremonies, art and culinary culture. The exhibition will be accompanied by performances, film presentations, stories, cooking jams, concerts and happenings. Artists, researchers and activists from numerous countries including Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Zimbabwe, Cape Verde, Brazil, Nigeria, Tanzania, China, Ghana, Canada, Benin, Senegal, Mozambique, Morocco and the Ivory Coast will contribute to the research efforts and implementation of the programme. The project will be hosted at venues throughout Berlin thanks to partnerships with various communities in Berlin.
Artistic director: Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung
Artists: ÀRÀKÁ (Diego Araúja, Laís Machado), Leo Asemota, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Ange Dakouo, Eric Gyamfi, Euridice Lakala, Ibrahim Mahama, Farkhondeh Shahroudi, Olu Oguibe and others
Exhibition / stories, cooking jams, concerts and film screenings / performance series:
Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin: Exhibition: 2 Jun. – 27 Aug. 2023; and performance series: 2–5 Jun. 2023