movt nr. 7: On Cairo / performance

movt nr. 7: On Cairo (exhibition and performance).

Artist Charl Landvreugd in dialogue with the deceased writer Edgar Cairo

What does it mean to be black in the Netherlands today and what has white got to do it? In what way does the history of slavery live on? Where has 150 years of living together brought us? Commissioned by the Tropenmuseum, artist Charl Landvreugd exhibits new work inspired by these questions. For Charl Landvreugd the daily experience of ‘being different’ forms the basis of a question that affects us all: how do we want to live together in the Netherlands? He engages in dialogue with the work of the Surinamese writer and columnist Edgar Cairo (1948-2000), who occupied himself from the 1970s with this question.

The work of Charl Landvreugd & Edgar Cairo will be exhibited from 16 January to 2 March 2014 in the Tropenmuseum’s Gallery.

Video: (3 screen projection)

Monuments for the future

This project is part of the Monuments for the future series. The Tropenmuseum asked three artists to react to various questions from the Black & White exhibition with new work. Each one of them invited a partner to work with them. The result can be seen in three exhibitions which turn to history to determine a position in the world today. Patricia Kaersenhout & Jimini Hignett were the first in the series with the work Handle with Care. Charl Landvreugd & Edgar Cairo will be followed by Iris Kensmil & Willem de Rooij.

Charl Landvreugd & Edgar Cairo

Charl Landvreugd chose Edgar Cairo as his partner for this project. Landvreugd explains: “Edgar Cairo was extremely critical in his columns and books about how the Surinamer/migrant develops in the Netherlands. Cairo was convinced that you have to be aware of your personal and communal history to be a balanced, successful factor in society. From the 1970s the matter-of-fact way in which he talked about being black was, until recently, shocking for many Surinamers. Many of the current generation see Cairo as a forefather of the way of taking being black for granted that is developing at the moment in the Netherlands and Europe.” Landvreugd enters into dialogue with this information. The result is a monument/document for the citizen of the future in the form of an installation.

Performance and lecture

On Saturday 18 January at 3 pm there will be an opening performance of parts of Cairo’s first book Temekoe from 1969. Using the call and response style, this book tells the story of generational traumas from the slave history being passed on in the Surinamese Creole community. This style of story telling is typical of the West African communities in North and South America. It will also be used during Landvreugd’s performance. A choir of five women will react to the stories of the narrator with songs and sayings. You don’t often come across this form of story telling these days, which makes it extra special!

On 20 February at 4 pm Landvreugd will give a lecture about his installation and relationship with Edgar Cairo. After the lecture there will be a discussion with Wayne Modest, Head of Collections & Research Tropenmuseum, and others.

Black & White exhibition

Monuments for the future is part of the Black & White exhibition organized by Tropenmuseum 150 years after the abolition of slavery. Personal stories, photos, films and artworks show how ‘black’ and ‘white’ have lived together in the Netherlands since then. All seems to be well in the football world: nobody in the national team is black or white, everyone is orange. Or not? By asking

thought-provoking questions the Tropenmuseum invites visitors to engage in the discussion. With each other and with themselves. The Black & White exhibition can be seen from 1 November 2013 to 1 July 2014 in the Tropenmuseum’s Great Hall.

This is a preview of the film ‘movt nr. 7: On Cairo, re:Performance’.

Performed at Tropenmuseum Amsterdam as part of the exhibition Monuments for the Furure: conversation between Charl landvreugd and Edgar Cairo.

Monuments for the future

This project is part of the Monuments for the future series. The Tropenmuseum asked three artists to react to various questions from the Black & White exhibition with new work. Each one of them invited a partner to work with them. The result can be seen in three exhibitions which turn to history to determine a position in the world today. Patricia Kaersenhout & Jimini Hignett were the first in the series with the work Handle with Care. Charl Landvreugd & Edgar Cairo will be followed by Iris Kensmil & Willem de Rooij.

Charl Landvreugd & Edgar Cairo

Charl Landvreugd chose Edgar Cairo as his partner for this project. Landvreugd explains: “Edgar Cairo was extremely critical in his columns and books about how the Surinamer/migrant develops in the Netherlands. Cairo was convinced that you have to be aware of your personal and communal history to be a balanced, successful factor in society. From the 1970s the matter-of-fact way in which he talked about being black was, until recently, shocking for many Surinamers. Many of the current generation see Cairo as a forefather of the way of taking being black for granted that is developing at the moment in the Netherlands and Europe.” Landvreugd enters into dialogue with this information. The result is a monument/document for the citizen of the future in the form of an installation.

Performance and lecture

On Saturday 18 January at 3 pm there will be an opening performance of parts of Cairo’s first book Temekoe from 1969. Using the call and response style, this book tells the story of generational traumas from the slave history being passed on in the Surinamese Creole community. This style of story telling is typical of the West African communities in North and South America. It will also be used during Landvreugd’s performance. A choir of five women will react to the stories of the narrator with songs and sayings. You don’t often come across this form of story telling these days, which makes it extra special!

On 20 February at 4 pm Landvreugd will give a lecture about his installation and relationship with Edgar Cairo. After the lecture there will be a discussion with Wayne Modest, Head of Collections & Research Tropenmuseum, and others.

tropenmuseum.nl/nl/node/242

The Black & White exhibition has been financed by the Mondriaan Fonds, SNS REAAL Fonds, Stichting Herdenking Slavernijverleden 2013, AFK (Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst),  kfHein fonds,  Janivo Stichting and  Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds. The Tropenmuseum receives structural support from the members of the BankGiro Lottery.

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