Memories of the Killing

LCB Depot, Leicester, 2014

As part of the group show titled “The textures of archive“, “Memories of the Killing” consisted of an installation of archive boxes on a table, filled with acid free tissue paper which had been applied onto body parts to give sculptural imprints, as well as a large drawing. Installation and drawings were selected from a series representing memories of things heard, seen, dreamed of, experienced or imagined, all relating to the atrocities of violence.

Desire for destruction is a reality that inhabits each of us. Just as we have the potential to give birth, we have the potential to kill. The fears of violent attacks, mutilations, wars, also are deeply embedded within our bodies and they are likely to appear in dreams, for example as a symbolic form. The body parts imprints referred to a specific visual memory from the documentary “Shoah” about the Holocaust that Siani Djiakoua had decided to watch when she was a teenager, even though she knew it would be disturbing.

“Somehow, within myself lie the memories of my ancestors, of all our ancestors. I believe that, maybe in our DNA, is encapsulated the history of humanity, an intimate history of events as felt from inside. Within myself lie such horrifying scenes but it is only by working from within that one can understand, regain control and work at preventing the re-enactment of such terrible things. However, as I am developing this series of drawings and familiarising myself with the “Horror”, I see that there is another side to the darkness of destruction. That, out of the blood, life can also be fed.”

© 2018 by Céline Siani Djiakoua

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