“njanga wata” (rio dos cameroes)

2009-2010 (photography/video/installation/sound)sequences rio dos cameroes 1

“njanga wata” project comprises  elements of photography (rio dos cameroes), a video installation (CFI 1:17”) and a video sculpture/installation comprising 4 CRT TV tubes of different sizes disposed to create a precise sculptural form with (4 interactive videos; 16:22”, 3:12”, 2:12”, 3:36” & sound: 12:23”) The videos loop to create different visual and sound combinations and permutations.

“Njanga wata” is a Pidgin English language translation of “river of prawns” (English), “Rio dos Cameroes” (Portuguese). Like in most sub-Saharan African states it explores observations from the annexation era through the colonial and independence period until present day In- Dependence vis a vis socio-economic and political thought patterns without contextualization. “Njanga wata” project employs sonic and visual poetry in the investigation of a basic idea that people, places and things could become what they are called.


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CFI (round & round) video link


njanga wata video installation (documentation view)


njanga wata I

zone of the amber, sins of her fathers

ambled was her paths through the fertile amber zones

humbled by

 the cries of her tired fragile bones

ambushed by seeds sown on black masked gold

her name was carved on a stone and married to a rig

sub-marines found no re

ason to unchain, entertainment bore no need

corals and sea weeds comm

ute in lust as her slave-dance feet bleeds

she wails and awaits black gold messiah to spoil and get fixed

whilst the agony of her fumbling lips drowned in oceanic might

the songs of her ancient clans is still raped by sons like of her rescent past

she cries a river, water bound left no clue

she bleeds internally as sea weeds patched her sores

should we blam

e it on tired drills with much weight to ferry?

or watch her flow with time’s healer pill,

praying sun’s kiss drive her ashore.

njanga wata

prawn infested waters, quater past the estuary,

like a midnight sun dance, sweet-sour-bitter.

prawns infested by the waters, half past the estuary

sweet-sour-bitter december flight, Abu Dhabi-Bimbia-Alaska

a child is named, a new fate is born

unconscious a child clings to its given name

let today be the day when you know your real name,

let today be the day when you see your real face,

let today be the day when you deviate from the frame

About Em'kal Eyongakpa

Em'kal Eyongakpa (b 1981) , Kɛnyaŋland/Dɛnyaland/ Itinerant. Approaches the experienced, the unknown, as well as collective histories through a ritual use of repetition and transformation, with interwoven installations/performances/soundscapes, that not only blurs the boundaries between employed media, but could also alter the notion of the real and the illusory. Initially trained as a botanist and ecologist, Eyongakpa switched to an interdisciplinary art pursuit, before taking even more time off for reflections around KHaL!LAND/KHaL! SHRINE/KHaL!toPIA. Selected recent exhibitions include 13th Sharjah Biennial 2017, La Biennale de Montréal 2016, 32a Bienal de São Paulo, Negotiations 1-i; Dualaland-Paris (Solo), Kadist art Foundation.

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