Interviews door Sinzo Aanza: #2 Eddy Kamuanga Ilunga

Tentoonstellingszicht ‘Een gesprek tussen collecties uit Kinshasa en Oostende’ (episode 3): Eddy Kamuanga Ilunga, z.t., 2015, privécollectie (c) Kristien Daem

Sinzo Aanza is cocurator van de tentoonstelling ‘Een gesprek tussen collecties uit Kinshasa en Oostende’. Hij interviewde acht kunstenaars die leven en werken Kinshasa en wiens werk in langdurige bruikleen in Mu.ZEE aanwezig is. De gesprekken gaan voornamelijk (gedeeltelijk) door in het Lingala omdat dit de kunstenaars toelaat op een vrijere manier te spreken over hun werk. Voor de vertaling werkt Mu.ZEE samen met Universiteit Gent. De acht interviews zullen allemaal beschikbaar worden gemaakt via deze blog.

# 2: Eddy Kamuanga Ilunga


0:00-0:17        First of all, I can say that I’m a selfish artist.
0:17-0:20        Because when I’m working,
0:20-0:27        it’s difficult for me to think about the finished work.
0:27-0:33        When I’m working, I think mainly about myself.
0:33-0:41        It’s as if I’m looking for a kind of cure while I’m working.
0:42-0:43        In the first place, for myself.
0:44-0:52        But at the same time, my work also sheds light on the society in which I live.
0:53-0:54        Kinshasa and Congo.
0:55-1:00        And I also make references to historical facts,
1:01-1:04        and to ancient times,
1:05-1:10        in order to conduct a study
1:10-1:13        into the effects of the past on the present.
1:15-1:18        At the same time, I realise that there’s a problem in Congo.
1:18-1:22        The Congolese society is one of them,
1:22-1:25        because it has no actual connection with art.
1:25-1:33        It’s a society that’s fallen victim to a sort of exclusion.
1:33-1:37        As if people have been cut off from art.
1:38-1:44        These are the questions I ask myself during the course of my work.
1:45-1:54        How to restore the connection between Congolese society and art.
1:56-2:01        And I always try to do that differently.
2:02-2:04        But with regard to the finished work,
2:04-2:16        It’s important, for me, that my artworks end up in museums.
2:17-2:20        I mean museums all over the world.
2:20-2:23        Also in Kinshasa.
2:24-2:29        I hope that, in time, there will be more museums in Kinshasa.
2:30-2:37        When I talk about museums, I’m thinking specifically about preservation.
2:38-2:46        Congolese artists have always loved to create works of art for their society.
2:47-2:50        Yet the problem of preservation still isn’t resolved.
2:50-2:53        It’s really not working, you see?
2:54-2:56        And I also have the idea –
2:57-3:04        I always dream of being able to donate my works to Congolese museums.
3:05-3:09        For example, the Musée de l’Echangeur.
3:10-3:14        It’s too bad, because every time I go there,
3:18-3:19        I see that from a conservation standpoint it’s not worth donating my work.
3:20-3:23        I can donate an artwork to Kin ArtStudio
3:23-3:29        This happens a lot, so I’ll also donate.
3:30-3:37        But at the same time, as an artist, it’s also important
3:38-3:42        to use my art to create a kind of connection with Congolese society.
3:43-3:50        And, for the moment, I’m thinking about how I can realise that connection.
3:51-3:54        I’m trying to set up a project
3:55-4:02        to help get rid of that exclusion.
4:03-4:08        This exclusion, which dates back to the past,
4:09-4:12        and which has severed the connection between art and society.
4:13-4:16        I’m trying to launch just such a project.
4:16-4:18        I’m mulling it over.
4:18-4:23        I believe that by next year,
4:24-4:26        I’ll be ready to put this project in place.
4:27-4:32        And it’s a project that’s really directed towards society.
4:33-4:36        It might not involve making exhibitions in public spaces.
4:38-4:43        But trying, for example, to show films of my work,
4:44-4:48        or films by other Congolese artists,
4:49-4:51        or, why not, by other people as well.
4:52-5:00        To try and offer to the public, to society, the work we do.
5:01-5:04        And also the work that I produce.
5:05-5:12        In the end, to try and convey the reflections that I make through my own work.

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