In collaboration with artist Jelili Atiku, Boy.Brother.Friend is revisiting previous works by the artist. Alaagba is a performance installation with Cristiane Marques de Oluveira in a public gallery Space at Praça da Liberdade, Centro Cultural Banco do Brazil, Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Originally performed on 11th of October 2017.
In 1450, an atrocity against the people of Africa began when the Portuguese commenced exploration of the continent when sailing along its coast. The success of Portuguese’s expeditions invigorated other European naval powers to explore Africa. Therefore,by the mid-nineteenth century, Europeans propelled by the Industrial Revolution and the need for cheap labour, raw material, and new markets; had taken control and established colonies in all African territories. Thus capitalized, and dominated the land with introduction of crude and inhuman racial treatments and measures.
In the late 1950s, African began the process of decolonization through self-governance and independence from colonialism and neocolonialism. Although African states are today independent, but decolonisation and healing processes seem to be slow and ineffective. Africa remains heavily dependent and under the effect of neocolonialism and neoliberalism.This dependency and unrestrained “exploitation particularly through the activities of trans national corporations, adversely affects the living conditions of millions of people in Africa,creating economic hardship and in some cases encouraging political repression”.
The above context motivates the interest and serves as the background to investigate and probe into the political space of the present human conditions in Africa.The aim of which is to engage public space as social repertoire of people’s collective and individual African experiences; and produce socio-political performance in order to instigate critical discussion(s) on the post- modern socio economic and political situations in the continent. The direction here will be to direct attention to the issue of the past so as to activate actions to RETHINK the contents of the past, RESHAPE the present and REINVENT the future; hence the performance, Alaagba.
Alaagba is a processional performance that integrated the elements in the public space, especially architecture and human forms in performative processes of etutu (ritual) of cleanse. It also engaged the people with intent of drawing them into action and constructing perhaps multiple simultaneous discourses on the issues of post- colonial African experiences and realities. Borrowing its title from the religion ethics, values and practice of Egungun, the theme of the performance is to re-open discourse’s on the issue of decolonisation of Africa.The mediums of expression in the project were restricted mainly to performance and installation, which include text, drawing and video.