27 - 28 January 2007

Thinking About

Artistic exchange gathering

Collaborators: Enough Room for Space and iStrike

Organisers: Lucia Babina, Marjolijn Dijkman, Dunja Herzog, Iolanda Pensa, Kamiel Verschuren

Participants: Lucia Babina, Blaise Bang, Ulrike Bartels, James Beckett, Edgar Cleijne, Stefaan Dheedene, Marjolijn Dijkman, doual’art, Emiliano Gandolfi, Christian Hanussek, Dunja Herzog, Iolanda Pensa, Daniela Roth, Didier Schaub, Fiona Siegenthaler, Claudia Wegener, Maarten Vanden Eynde, Kamiel Verschuren, Alexander Vollebregt

Hosts: Duende, Boijmans van Beuningen, Enough Room for Space

Lecturers: doual’art; Blaise Bang (member of Cercle Kapsiki), Scénografie urbaine; James Beckett, The radiostation project in Douala 2003; Iolanda Pensa, introduction to cultural and artistic context of Douala

Video Screenings: Stefaan Dheedene, Sandrine Dole and Goddy Leye, Christian Hanussek

Support:  Boijmans van Beuningen, C.B.K. Rotterdam, Mondriaan Foundation

Joseph Sumegné, “La nouvelle liberté”, 1996, commissioned by doual’art

The artist initiatives iStrike and Enough Room for Space are pleased to introduce the work of doual'art to curators in Rotterdam and to involve artists and operators in a two-day debate on artistic projects in Douala. The artists invited to the preparatory meeting will focus on the role of the arts and artistic processes in Douala. Douala has nor an art schools nor an art museums. In this city, art seems to flourish in a more spontaneous way, as an ordinary public action at an urban level. Isn’t it precisely because art is not institutionalized that it can keep its outstanding strength and efficacy?

Thinking About! is an event organised by iStrike, a partner of doual’art in setting up the SUD 2007 Programme and Ars&Urbis International Workshop (03-17 March 2007), and by Enough Room for Space, the promoter of a collaborative project to take place in Douala in the coming years.  SUD 2007 is a long-term programme with an international scope. SUD 2007 aims at promoting new perspectives on Douala and facilitating new site-specific interventions, while giving international visibility to the city and its cultural milieu. SUD 2007 was initiated by doual’art. Doual'art is a no-profit organisation founded in 1991 in Douala, Cameroon, and an experimental laboratory for new urban practices in African cities.

Through site-specific urban interventions, doual’art works as an intermediary between social and economic actors, civil society and artists. Artists are involved as facilitators of development. Doual’art perceives cultural and artistic production as a tool for freedom of expression and social cohesion, which allows transcending and overcoming closures and cleavages. Doual’art’s participatory approach to cultural practices, to discussions and negotiations with local communities, NGO’s and authorities helps negotiating different needs and aspirations. The co-founders of doual’art, Marilyn Douala Bell and Didier Schaub are visiting the Netherlands for a week within the Mondriaan Foundation's Visiting Programme.

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