Stories of Objects In Displacement
Choose an object in exile and of exile from your past or from your present, send us an image of it, tell us its story.
Like us, an object has many lives and tells many stories. Witnesses of a presence or an absence, an object reminds us who we were and who we are, where we are from, who used to love and care for us, whom we loved and cared for. Those who left their homeland did it accompanied by their objects, or by the memory of objects they couldn’t bring. That’s what we are looking for. Objects. We are looking for objects, any objects, together with stories that come along with them. Because objects tell stories, they are the visible fragments of our biography.
The economic and social crisis of the early 1990s, brought by the agony of the USSR, left a stark memory of deficit which became firmly imprinted into my consciousness.
The daily discomfort we faced at that time was far from a joke: total deficit of all types of goods, rapid inflation and insecurity. I remember the empty shelves of the local food stores and the never-ending, hundred metres-long queues. The queues deserve a special mention: they were an unavoidable attribute of every shopping procedure and it was customary to join one before inquiring what exactly the people were queuing for. We used to spend hours queuing for such basic products as fish, meat, butter, vegetable oil and even bread... [continue reading]
Artist’s discard. The top of a totem drawn by Olivier Dipama (Burkina Faso) on a piece of plywood, broken in more than one piece. Olivier works in a Grand Hotel in Via Veneto, Rome. As an escape from the routine of the his porterage job, he frequents the CivicoZero (Social Cooperative based in Rome aiming at supporting and helping young migrants, in order to improve their life condition and guarantee the respect of their rights), he locks himself in a 1x2 meters storage room and there cuts, draws and colors the culture of his country of origin, “the country of the men of integrity”. This is a broken piece taken from one of his totems, which he gave me as a present. Through this object I can talk about the talent of many young men such as him who, though they feel lost, can still express themselves through art, and maybe survive thanks to it.
Alessandro Triulzi, from the exhibition to be [defined]
When he escaped from Tunisia, my father wanted to bring over his new leather shoes. But his parents wanted him to put them in the wooden box that was supposed to arrive by ship a few weeks later. The box got to Malta in the end, but the shoes were stolen, and have been replaced with an used pair.
Katel Delia, from the exhibition to be [defined]
This small black object became particularly relevant to me in February 2009, when I got my first residence permit in Netherlands. Having my wallet meant having my residence document always there, with me. Having my wallet meant being sure that I could reply, defend myself against the police or other people who could have harassed me or threw racist words in my face. Leaving the house without my wallet -- and so, without these crucial documents -- was a terrifying prospect. Going out without my residence permit would be like opening a Pandora’s box, from which all the bad things related to migration would pour back onto me.
Guy Woueté, from the exhibition to be [defined]