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2012 - 2014

Kinderspeletjies: Lokvalle (Children’s games: Traps)

This project started with the concept of cell memories which, simply explained, pertains to memories being physically stored within the cells of our bodies. Memories can be evoked or triggered by a certain stimulus, which in turn can trigger certain physiological reactions, such as the manner in which a person positions their body or in the repetition of a certain movement of the body, however small.

In Kinderspeletjies: Lokvalle, I explored this concept together with the idea of reinterpreting children’s games and songs set in an Afrikaner milieu and landscape. I have drawn inspiration from the theories of Martin Esslin’s Theater of the Absurd with specific emphasis on the staged, impulsive, and irrational behavior of the characters. Likewise, the absurdity of some of the children’s games, like heads being chopped off in the game Koljander-Koljander, is explored. It is about revealing the darkness in supposed innocence: the trap (lokval).

In essence, Kinderspeletjies: Lokvalle is about using illusion (games) to uncover the harsh realities of life. In the Afrikaans language, the use of double words such as speel-speel (play-play) implies that an act of pretending is involved. As such, the artworks confront realities and feelings that we hide from. It is about taking responsibility and acknowledging our participation in our own personal dramas and the games that we play in life.

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