the holes at the back of our knees tingle, 1786 Africa Map, by Mbongeni Dlamini

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the holes at the back of our knees tingle

1786 Africa Map

  • 13" x 22"

Artist: Mbongeni Dlamini, Swati Eswatini (Swaziland)

Notes from the artist: Taking the 1786 French map of Africa as a starting point, the piece is an intervention, an obstruction, a repossession and a haunting. The map itself brazenly details the riches of Africa and the best places from which to extract them. A layer of lubovu redacts the colonial text, interferes with the map and reclaims the information therein by offering it to the ancestors. Lubovu, or ochre, has been used creatively and ceremonially in this part of the world for tens of thousands of years. Ochre serves the purpose of communing with or introducing the ancestors, thus giving the map to my ancestors to metabolize.

Map Origin: Jean-Baptiste Louis Clouet, Paris, Royal Geographer of the Academie des Sciences de Rouen

Map is placed in archival quality black mat.

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