Alterazioni video All my friends are dead
Bandjoun / Cameroon 2009
exhibited: 21x21, 21 Artisti per il 21° secolo, Fonadazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, curated by Francesco Bonami, Torino, Italy, 2009 DWELLING IN TRAVEL, Art Today Association, curated by Katia Anguelova and Andrea Wiarda, Plovdiv, Bulgaria
The movie “All my friends are dead”, 2010 was originated by the experience the artists went through during their stay in the Bandjoun village, in western Cameroon, while joining the scientific expedition of the anthropologist Ivan Bargna. A time during which the artists had the chance to familiarize with the society and culture of the Bamileke people, whose broadmindedness (openness) to modernity (we’re talking about merchants always seeking for new business opportunities) goes hand in hand with a strong sense of tradition. So, the king of Bandjoun despite travelling on a Mercedes, continues to have his spiritual double in the leopard and to make the rain come in order to fertilize the fields. Just like the elephant masks haven’t stopped dancing although the same people who wear them speak on mobile phones and wear nike.
Therefore with the economic recession zombies and vampires are catching ground, because witchcraft isn’t the survival of some dark past, but the language through which they try to convey meaning to misery and to those social injustices of a globalized world.
While shooting a Horror movie with a local cast and using the set and the stage as an ethnographic camp, Alterazioni Video and Ivan Bargna have set fear has the object of their investigation, disturbing the uncertain boundary, between reality and deception, between personal emotions and stage performances, between art and anthropology.
From Hollywood to Bandjoun the zombies are part of a widely shared global imaginary, but also an every day and concrete presence in the local witchcraft practices. Are they the same zombies? I sit the very same fear?