Live Arkive (2017)

Lavinia and Nicola (projected) at NAGN. Image by Vilho Nuumbala

An exchange project with Ndinomholo Ndilula and Lavinia Kapewasha (Namibia), and Nicola van Straaten (South Africa). We developed the concepts over a number of months almost entirely through online communication and our ideas were made manifest in three different spaces.

The first event at the John Muafangejo Art Centre in Katatura comprised a performance by Ndinomholo within an installation of sound, video and objects, followed by a public discussion during which groups of participants were cued by printed questions and encouraged to send voice notes of their conversations via WhatsApp to a designated project cellphone.

Participants in the discussion at JMAC. Image by Vilho Nuumbala

We then moved to the National Art Gallery of Namibia where Ndinomholo, Lavinia, Nicola (from Berlin via Skype) and I performed within an interactive installation that remained in the space for three weeks.

Ndinomholo and public at NAGN. Image by Vilho Nuumbala 

In Cape Town, we curated a version of the same installation in a theatre space, the Theatre Arts Admin Collective in Observatory. We set up stations, or “dimensions” where the public was to perform certain activities: use a QR code to access a recording of fragments of a narrative, create a collage or fashion an object from printed fragments of the project’s own archive, interact with Nicola through Skype, pick cues for conversation and send voice notes to the project cellphone, listen to CDs of the conversations in Katatura.

In all three iterations, a sound piece that I created was on loop. I made from processed WhatsApp voice notes that we had sent each other throughout the year in developing the project. 

Ndinomholo and Pam at TAAC. Image by Lindsey Appolis

Collage at TAAC. Image by Lindsey Appolis

Tammy at TAAC. Image by Lindsey Appolis

Participants at TAAC.  Image by Lindsey Appolis

The project seeks to propose creative relationships between performance and archives and encourage discussion between and amongst Namibian and Capetownian artists and stakeholders in the arts. Any Body Zine published a booklet collating various reflections on the project as iterated in October 2017 that is available here in digital form or in physical form from various bookstores in Cape Town and Johannesburg.

Live Arkive was supported by an ANT Funding Grant from Pro Helvetia Johannesburg financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) as well as the Goethe-Institut Namibia and the John Muafangejo Art Centre (NAM). It was created in partnership with the National Art Gallery of Namibia and Any Body Zine (ZA). 

End of call. Image by Lindsey Appolis