Maëlle Baudry tells us about “Djerbahood”, a unique experience she has just discovered :
Djerbahood is a humanitarian project, based on the houses of Djerba, a Tunisian island. Medhi Ben Cheikh, the director of this project, decided to call street artists -- more than 150, from more than 30 different nations. Each in his / her own way invades the streets with paints, graffiti, stencils... Erriyadh village (which means "the little love") became a symbol of positive messages of happiness, peace and freedom in a country which is just out of a popular uprising against austerity. This project is, as Mehdi Ben Cheikh said, « one of the best weapons we have in our struggle against obscurantism ». This little neighbourhood can visually take us to all the continents : Oceania, with Fitan Maggie who travelled from Australia, North America representated by Swoon ; and staying in Africa, we count many artists, like the Kenyan WiseTwo, and Faith47, from The South-African Republic. A few years ago, when France discovered the work of this self-educated South African woman, the world of urban arts was amazed. Nowadays, she’s internationally known and her singular style is clearly recognisable. Her work is embedded, adapted in urban environments all over the world, she draws support from memory and is constantly looking for human interactions, giving new sense to her works. Her murals are political, inspired by social realities from her country. Indeed, she participates in the writing of the “New post-apartheid South Africa”. The freedom she takes as an artist astounds and forces respect. In Erriyadh, she discovered a village mixing modern and historical architectures. Faith47 creates therefore a real relation between the wall-structure and the picture she “graphs” on it. So we can see her enchanting unicorn on a tiny street corner -- how wonderful it is ! Between a dream world and the past of a place. “New South African” culture comes to confront with the post-revolutionary Arabic Tunisia, it’s as stunning as it is seizing -- evidence that, despite all censorships and criticisms, art is a free and meaningful means of expression.
Faith 47 / The Unicorn / Djerbahood
WiseTwo / Street Art / Djerbahood
Note that Djerbahood is probably derived from neighbourhood; in African-American slang, "hood" is a neighborhood, usually a depressed community; it is most often used in reference to the neighborhood that the speaker is from.
Tags: Faith47, Fitan Maggie, Swoon, Tunisia, taggers
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