On Tuesday, May 11th at 11:00 (The Hague) and 12:00 (Nairobi), we received Njoki, Sunny and Jim in our virtual space to kickoff their 'occupation' of Our House Your Home. Stroom's new artistic director, Alexandra Landré, welcomed The Nest in her second day (!) present at Stroom.
Here we are, eight months through our hybrid experiment. In September last year we hoped Jim, Sunny and Njoki would be here this spring. So much has happened since then!
Today we are still united through our cameras and screens; venturing into another month of online engagement and co-learning. Our House your Home became a virtual space. Through this space we will experiment with more gatherings bridging The Hague and Nairobi, connecting Stroom to The Nest, and to the public at large, finding commonalities in the multitude of differences, learning on the go.
In the meantime, we were all scattered in the Netherlands too, working from our homes very often. This remote working added an extra challenge to the already experimental nature of this program. Working from our living rooms and studios, peeping into each other intimate spaces, we have adapted ourselves, with all its coziness and awkwardness. All this remote communication demanded a high degree of generosity, in writing, listening and attending to each other.
The textile project initiated up by The Nest Collective in the light of Our House your Home, aims for a material language, a tactile, woven medium that can embody their many questions. Jim Chuchu said a year ago, in times of pandemic, products and samples can still travel, while bodies cannot. Our guests make themselves present at Stroom today through their extensive research. Their new printed fabrics and videos will occupy our space, before flying to Kenya and arriving at the local market. It was my privilege and my pleasure to follow your process closely, meeting you every other week, getting to know you, during the lonnng Dutch winter.
Thanks everyone who joined the kickoff today. May we take a beautiful journey this month.