So it was said that something like this has not been seen in the National Museum of Kenya (NMK).
As part of the Sensing Nairobi expo, I built in this hall a monument to commemorate the destruction of City Cotton. City Cotton – that’s the story of the destruction in 2013 of a small slum village in the middle of Nairobi which was attacked by gangsters calling themselves ‘Mungiki’ and corrupted police officers, paid for by former Kenyan president Moi. The survivors fight up to today for justice. A battle of epic proportions between the most powerful and the most powerless. Read & see more about it at: https://rxaxlxf.net/city-cotton/
It’s a good sign that the positive forces within the NMK (a Kenyan Government institution) made a point to allow me to build this installation right in this very place. Despite the ongoing censorship in Kenya (also in the NMK) and while also still 5 of my works are confiscated by another branch of this same Government, it shows that there are also within Kenyan Government institutions people who don’t want the country to go back to darkness. But the struggle is real.
I made my ‘Kenyan Nightmare Chamber’ interactive by distributing charcoal along the walls and inviting the visitors to express their feelings on those walls. This resulted in countless layers of writings, drawings and all kind of graffiti. The first couplet of the Kenyan National Anthem which I had initially written on the walls, is hardly visible anymore. Already when the walls were almost full, people kept writing and writing and so they do up to today.
After the 1st of July, I will break down & pack whatever remains from the installation and the walls will be sealed by layers of white paint, till no graffiti is visible anymore. I hope that in a couple of hundreds of years, future archaeologists will analyze the writings under the paint and create an image of the time frame we have lived in out of it. The voices of the voiceless will be heard again!
My special thanks go to all people who made this possible, who helped with the construction and who wrote on the walls. And I was particular happy to welcome my guests of honour, the chairpeople of the residents of City Cotton. They are the real warriors on the ground for a better tomorrow, putting their life in risk for peace & justice, day by day.