Video installation, colour, French spoken, English subtitles
24 min, 16:9
The project Bricks consists of the 2 video installations La couleur de la brique (2017) and Ingahi Kama (2018), the installation Circular construction versus human body – referring to Toshikatsu Endo (2018), the publication Piles des Bricks/Piles des briques (2020), the installations and performances Piles of Bricks (2020-ongoing) and the drawing series Brick Dust (2020-ongoing).
With the video Ingahy Kama, I fictionalize the pioneering missionary James Cameron who introduced bricks in the 19th century in Madagascar. In this video work, inhabitants from Madagascar and its capital Antananarivo read aloud fragments of the correspondence of Cameron and other missionaries. Through this act I want to ‘give back’ these letters symbolically to them.
Ingahy Kama, which translates roughly as Mister Cameron in the local language, illustrates the tension between the sometimes seemingly incontestable power of ‘historiography’ and the relevance of the weight of personal experience(s). For indeed, the interpretation of history is never univocal—and neither is the history of Madagascar. The letters and writings by him and other missionaries, which are today conserved in London—and which are therefore practically inaccessible to the Malagasy people—are often used for writing ‘local’ history.
See the video here (key: Kama)
Photos and stills Bie Michels