On May 5, on the occasion of the AfroPixel#5 Festival organized as part of the 2016 Dak’Art Biennale, AtWork was in Dakar, together with Kër Thiossane, to present the exhibition of Moleskine notebooks created in four years of AtWork by young creative individuals and artists who participated in the Dakar, Abidjan, Kampala and Cairo workshops. The exhibition, curated by Katrin Peters-Klaphake, was held at the renovated public library of Sicap Liberté, Dakar.
In May 2012, we arrived in Dakar to launch AtWork for the first time, inspired by the idea, hope and belief that creativity, if supported by an alternative educational approach, can create new worlds and produce changes.
Schools, universities and master’s programs are good, but are not enough. We need an alternative way to access knowledge, without hierarchies and pre-established schemes. We need to become active protagonists, rather than mere recipients.
Under the guidance of artist Kan-Si, the workshop held in Dakar, in partnership with Kër Thiossane, on the occasion of Afropixel#3 during the Dak’Art Biennale, became the testing ground for this idea. For three days, 20 students and young creative individuals took on the challenge to subvert the certainties that had until then underpinned their fundamental beliefs. Focusing on democracy, a crucial topic during the 2012 elections, they created unique, passionate and inspiring works of art.
After four years, we came back to Dakar with a wealth of workshop experiences, meetings and notebooks created during the various chapters of the project.
Each notebook bears the trace of a particular view of the world and of its possible alternatives. Each trace is the reflection of the countries and cultures we met, of their willingness to question their fundamental assumptions. Dakar, Abidjan, Kampala and Cairo came together to Dak’Art in those days, through the notebooks on which young artists have cast their creative gaze. The notebooks have become an amazing intertwining of stories, objects, colors, and materials, where north, south, east and west blend to create new directions.
There was no better place than the public library of Dakar to host all these works for the exhibition curated by Katrin Peters-Klaphake.
After a long renovation project to which we were also contributing, the library recently came to new life, providing the community of Sicap Libertè 2 with a new meeting place, a knowledge center, an opportunity for studying and learning.
See the exhibited notebooks below.