On decolonizing rituals
Jim and Njoki give an artist talk along Tuzi Creatives and the The Shift Collective

The Nest at 'Invisible Inventories' exhibition


On April 7th, Njoki Ngumi and Jim Chuchu gave a live tour through Invisible Inventories exhibition at the Nairobi National Museum (via Instagram). Invisible Inventories is a project that explores the questions of the objects’ absence in Kenya and reflects on this loss through art, research, inquiry and collaboration. The exhibition creates a debate on contentious parts of Kenya’s cultural heritage currently domiciled in museums and cultural institutions abroad.


"Our own artworks in the exhibition focus on the IIP database of Kenyan objects in museums abroad. We used the database to provide the foundation for our visual interpretations and insights. One of our featured works is '31,302', consisting of thermal prints on continuous adhesive labels. 31,302 unique labels each represent an object from the IIP database—holding space for objects absent in Kenya, and for the histories of the communities from which they came. We also explore some of the collectors named in the database, through rewritten biographies. We unpack the idea of the value of museum objects, and the differences between their street value in Kenya and their museum values once they cross into institutions, as well as their insurance values."


The works include explorations of specific Kenyan objects from the collections of the Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum and the Weltkulturen Museum, both in Germany, as well as the ways in which these objects are culturally interlinked, and how in each case they were appropriated by museums in the Global North. Rather than focusing on concrete issues about restitution there is an emphasis on creating a forum for investigating individual objects at an intellectual and emotional level. The partnering museums (Frankfurt’s Weltkulturen Museum and Cologne’s Rautenstrauch-Joest Museum) also present shared reflections on objects that have traveled. Read more on This is The Nest/works.


The Nest is giving an online talk on April 14th, alongside other featured artists Shift Collective and TUZI.
Read more on:
The National Museums of Kenya (Kenya)
Rautenstrauch-Joest Museum (Cologne)
Weltkulturen Museum (Frankfurt)

image from images.squarespace-cdn.com


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.