Friday, April 30, 2010

Remember to Forget the Congo

Remember to Forget the Congo is a five day performance by Adam Geczy in Belgium about the Belgian Congo. Beginning with a blackened room, Geczy will write out in white paint the entirety of Andre Gide's Voyage au Congo, an early twentieth century text exposing the iniquity of the Congo, that lives on today. Curiously enough, few people remember this text, although at the time had a considerable effect, and was indeed cited as something that ought never be forgotten. Taking this book as a symbol of a conservative repression, a negative osmosis if you will, Geczy will simultaneously enact political and social remembrance of trauma, whilst at the same time being complicit in its repression, since the end result it is a white room. The white room will be a dense palimpsetic residue of words, a beautiful skein, that is both beautiful and menacing, acting as both conscience and amnesia. At the end of the performance (five days, five hours on the fifth month), the installation will remain as a set of melancholy material remnants. (AG)

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