exposition de restitution dokountin#3 / 2016

mòsso is very pleased to invite you to dokountin #3 an exhibition curated by Estelle Lecaille and generously hosted by Artists Club / Coffre-fort in Brussels

Julien Dègan

Olivia Degrez

Roberta Gigante

Prince Soha

Opening on Thursday 17th November from 6 to 9 pm at the Artists Club / Coffre-fort

Exhibition until 11th December (by appointment only: + 32 486 36 15 42


Listening room by Roberta Gigante on Sunday 20th November at 5 pm

The exhibition will be open before and after the listening salon. Due to limited seating, please reserve before 18th November : mosso.brussels@gmail.com

Artists Club / Coffre-fort, Hopstraat 63 Rue du Houblon, 1000 Brussels


Lecture-performance on Vodun by Theodore Atrokpo on Saturday 26th November at 6 pm

For the exact location, please check the following website: http://www.enoughroomforspace.org/

Due to limited seating, please reserve before 20th November: mosso.brussels@gmail.com

Enough Room for Space HQ:
Sterstraat 10 Rue de L’Etoile,
1620 Drogenbos


The dokountin#3 residence, third edition of the artist exchange programme between Belgium and Benin powered by mòsso since 2014, took place during the summer 2016 in Abomey with artists Roberta Gigante and Olivia Degrez, in collaboration with Unik art centre, founded in 2012 by Benin artist Dominique Zinkpé.

During our research of male-female relations in Benin through the eyes of the Mamiwata (a goddess originating in the bordering countries and recently included in the beninese Vodun pantheon), we were inspired by the urban legends that we heard from people crossing our path about the alleged benefits of certain foods.

Does popcorn really boost virility to the same degree as that of cola nut, palm wine and other stimulants? Hard to prove, if we consider a placebo response… This popping seed has been the subject of Roberta Gigante’s work, developed in close collaboration with the foundry workers of Abomey, heirs to the craftsmanship of the well-regarded kingdom of danxomɛ, who agreed to reveal some of their long-kept secret know-how.

As a result, forty-something popcorn kernels are planted in the space of Coffre-fort on thin stems, like fragile, nearly-oscillating mounts producing unique light reflections at their tops.

Stories are crucial in this culture of oral transmission, as a means to convey moral and social codes and taboos. « Do not enter the Sacred Forest » is one of the precepts taught to children from their earliest years. We can indulge in such taboos during the listening session proposed by Roberta Gigante.

Abomey is the birthplace of the Vodun practice. Its weight in the lives and customs of the people in Benin has deeply influenced our artistic research. Moved by their belief that dreams are a privileged zone for contact with spirits, Olivia Degrez takes us on an intimate and dreamlike journey though a series of visual and sound scapes of Benin: the sea, the lakeside forests, the textile workers, the fishermen, the dressmaker… Here we follow a woman’s dreams and fantasies: from a fishing boat sailing into the deep sea, Mamiwata’s source, to the troubling, secretive lakeside forest, host to sacred ceremonies, and into the dark night where only a few shadows emerge. In her video, Olivia Degrez dives us into a peculiar, unfamiliar world, both neat and blurred, halted by everyday scenes that seem to pull us back to our reality.

This residence aimed at contesting our established approach of the world and the environment and widening our lens on the mysteries of life. Theodore Atrokpo is also pleased to disclose brief elements of it at his lecture on Vodun objects.

Estelle Lecaille (Brussels, October 2016)

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