Galerie Jeune creation, Paris, France
10 Jan 2021 - 26 Feb 2021

Image : Kelly Sinnapah Mary, “la fugue”, drawing on book, 2020

Image : Kelly Sinnapah Mary, “la fugue”, drawing on book, 2020

The exhibition is generated by a mot-intuition (mangrovity) that spreads a tale and some artworks around it.

Five international artists show their works in resonance with a myth invented by the exhibitionteller, The Crab and the Aparahiwa. On the one hand, the exhibitionteller invents on the basis of the artworks and, on the other hand, the artists create starting from the tale. For us, this story is a shared propagule, a collective rock rather than an individual property (it is shared with the Vincent Sator gallery). And the tales we tell, seek to free ourselves from the most stifling assimilation, the one that colonises our futures. So we try, doubtfully, to make some divinations and invent others mangles where new propagules will grow – and this mot-rêvé « mangrovity », where did it come from?

This is the first exchange between the Crab and the Aparahiwa :
« – Tell me, why do you keep on crossing as you do? See, feel. Each loop you touch unlocks itself and the ants flee first, kicking themselves in the buttocks with their legs to escape, quickly!
– My crossings are ‘ritings in the mud of your bodies, they tell the story of this land and that of the disaster. »

Perhaps from a dream or a conversation. Mangrovity is a poetic-political matter coming straight out of the history of patriarchal colonialism, it’s malgrove, it is soleil-énergie, and stinking mud, it is the opposite of the mangrophily of a certain neo-colonial ecological discourses (which, under the pretext of «preserving», remove and invisibilize populations and cosmogonies). Free from the experts, you find yourself dreaming about the mangrove and walking through its secrets and pirate lines – like those dream-shelters that Kelly Sinnapah Mary is making right now or like the Makouvia Kokou Ferdinand forest where everyone gets lost. You leave on the beach totems-words that ain’t made for your feet (rhizome, curator, scenography …). Oh, far away from this disenchanted world, the mangrove invents for us the childhood of people in tepee tents.

The exchange continues:

– « What disaster?
– If I cross, it is to bring you the wave’s message announcing the swallow of the land.
– At last!
– It’s a disa-star!
– No, a sequel. The waters rise and strike as you break.
– Or as I track; without my traces, there would be no memory of these places, like the memory of the first falling head which releases a sun on our tired shoulders (the aparahiwa’s breathing was slower, the air was circulating, going in and out from its pneumatophores) ».

You hear them announce the collapse, but you don’t panic anymore and observe Julia Gault tricking disaster and celebrate the ungovernability of matter instead of mourning its impossibility to be governed. I hear pirate ships and smiles that are knife-watercourse. Before boarding, Minia Biabiany told me about her desire to bring back sea salt and Ludovic Nino whispered to me the story of a former neg-robot who died, one abolition day, eaten by crabs.

End of the exchange:
– « Yes, you have in you this same risen land, this memory that you carry. You make it very difficult for yourself to carry all this, and all alone.
– If not me, then who else? (The plant began to cry, the tears formed small salted pearls in the hollow of its leaves) – But the world is a mangrovity! ».

This last sentence, this password which was for us the beginning, the exhibition title, the heart of a cherished mango carrying stories of contaminated lands in their belly by chlordecone claws, true ecocide and traces of predatory property practices in Romainville. This could be a mangrovity, the need to find strategies for living your feet in the shit or for opening up new futures. Experts predict disaster, artist prophesy stars.

Several organisations and associations will join the exhibition through a program of performances, discussions, readings, and we will try, in the night of our intuitions which are not institutions, to collect mangrove’s legs and screams. And even when the eye of Uranus goes down, you resist, your body left to the brown algae – they announce you, creolofuturist.

Curated by Chris Cyrille with the help of Sarah Matia Pasqualetti.
With : Minia Biabiany, Julia Gault, Kokou Ferdinand Makouvia, Ludovic Nino et Kelly Sinnapah Mary.