Sankofa: A South African Dream

Collaboration with Smangaliso Khumalo. Courtesy Institute for Creative Arts and Pro Helvetia – Swiss Arts Council

Sonkofa, from Adrinka philosophy, is the bedrock for the performance piece. The word is taken from Akan culture and translates as “return and collect it”. What is it that we are collecting? As we reverberate through space and time, our bodies implicitly act as vessels fetching from our collective memory. Our transmission concept includes thematics that deal with the exchange of relational ritual processes. It is to view this transmission or act of cultural exchange as a symbolic cultural dovetailing. Also fanatical reflection on perceptions of the world we live in. The work demands we ponder the episteme of our cultural diversity so that we shift not only our subliminal multi-sensory perceptions but rather our assimilations. Our dovetailing of our ritual processes is prioritized through performance as a trope that mediates between the two enmeshed cultural practices. The initial discomfort of cultures as dichotomous entities become a site where issues of difference and sameness come to the fore.

Photograph by Xolani Tulumani