Chale Wote Street Art Festival, August 2016
For 2016 year’s Chale Wote Street Art Festival, we collaborated with Photographer Ofoe Amegavie for our Moving Museum installation. The Museum showed some captivating photos of traditional festivals in Ghana. The CHALE WOTE Street Art Festival is an alternative platform that brings art, music, dance and performance out into the streets. This year’s theme SPIRIT ROBOT (15 -21 August 2016) reprograms history by melding West African mythology and artistic practice in a radical unveiling of alternative African realities; reclaiming memory maps about who we are and where we are going; and opening up a blueprint for radical reconstruction of our realities and pan-African building.
ANO is a cultural institution set up by Nana Oforiatta Ayim in order to create new narratives, sustainability in the arts, and the transformation of social contexts, through publications, films, collaborations, and research initiatives, like the pan-African CULTURAL ENCYCLOPAEDIA, – a large-scale documentation and archive project, that facilitates the re/ordering of knowledge, narratives and representations from and about the African continent, through a digital platform and in published volumes. Between the 17th and 21st of August 2016, ANO will hold the Cultural Encyclopaedia’s first Accra-based WORKSHOP, as well as setting up its travelling KIOSK MUSEUM as part of the Chale Wote festival.
FESTIVALS are, and have been, Ghana’s primary form of cultural expression, comprising art, design, music, poetry, history, politics, and religion, from the Homowo through the Odwira to the Chale Wote.
Through the re-enactments of historical events, such as migrations; through the objects, which tell the stories of former societies; through the horns and drums, which lament the passing of great rulers, we participate in a past, which becomes present and begins to inform our future. As cultural texts, they allow for a fluidity of history, in which participants are able to constantly recreate themselves, as well as strengthen socio-political links within and across boundaries. Through the CULTURAL ENCYCLOPAEDIA WORKSHOP on 17 August, we invite you to join us to create entries in a collective space, on festivals, their histories and meanings, from books and articles present, and thus to actively participate in formulating new narratives and representations, from and about the African continent.
The MUSEUM in the Ghanaian context, is a problematic interpreter of cultural heritage and knowledge. Many seem inaccessible; public displays seem irrelevant and unrepresentative of the cultural wealth inherent in the country. The KIOSK, on the other hand is ubiquitous. All around the country, people with few resources, create these structures for housing, for trade and commerce, whether barbershops, restaurants, hardware stores, or entertainment centres.
The kiosk with its total accessibility and multi-purpose use is the perfect vehicle for ANO, as it travels across the country, collecting materials, as well as exhibiting and interact with communities. ANO’s KIOSK MUSEUM, built by architect DK Osseo-Asare, will be at the Chale Wote Street Art Festival from 19 – 21 August, showing works by photographer Ofoe Amegavie, who over the last year, has been travelling the country documenting festivals. ANO aims to not only explore alternative forms of content and narrative, but also of form, using cultural expressions, like the festival, as inspirations to tell history in a way that is creative and innovative. So, that e.g., the drum orchestra, one of the festival’s foremost forms of history telling, is reflected in the collaborative effort of the ANO team, made up of Director Nana Oforiatta Ayim, who conceived the Cultural Encyclopaedia and the Kiosk Museum; Coordinator Namata Musisi and Development Director Sefa Gohoho, who collected and arranged the objects in the museum; Research Curator Moses Serubiri, who created the Museum soundscape, and with Researcher Drew Snyder put together the workshops on festivals and their findings; and interns Evi Olde Rikkert and Jonelle Twum, who created the booklet comprising their visual and written impressions from the festivals.