‘Songs of Colonial Labor’, presentation, workshops, audio visual production, 2020-21

In the framework of Sonsbeek 2020>2024, “Force Times Distance On Labour and its Sonic Ecologies”, I got invited by Aude Christel Mgba to be part of their educational and public program with this project about unconscious values of labour in children- en folksongs. By the project ‘Songs of Colonial Labour” I am focusing on European children’s songs and the labour values that are propagated by these songs, hidden between the lines of their lyrics–values that communicate gendered, classist and/or racist notions of labour on the one hand, or that resist or empower on the other. How can we commonly start to uncover these values hidden within well-known lyrics, to critically examine and understand their entangled value systems; strengthening values aimed to empower, whilst overcoming values that aim to oppress?

In this context I had conducted several workshops in May and August 2021 for people between 15-99 years where we thought together what it means to re-script the textes together. Look at some of the new lyrics here.

In the framework of the public program of Sonsbeek20<24 on 27th of August 2021 musician Kate Donkor and I took the audience on a journey guided by the Old Dutch folk song “Daar was eens een meisje loos”. I was presenting my research about a collection of folk-children songs communicating unequal  labour relations and social discrimination and the co-production on the audio-visual production with the musician Kate Donkor. Some of participants of the workshops, Hans Marcelis, Jan Meijering, Frauke De Gruyter, Ineke Mol and Piet Bakker were reciting their new texts, based on the original lyrics. I was inviting the audience to look, listen and speculate about the meaning of collectively transcribing the lyrics of songs. Which associations and memories does this kind of songs trigger around the notion of labour?

Listen hear to the audio recording (in Dutch) of 27th of August 2021: LINK

Watch here the documentation of that special evening:

The animation film and its' variations:
1. Songs of Colonial Labour - with the voices of several grandmothers.

2. A choir of voices.

3. New Lyrics

‘Songs of Colonial Labor’, presentation, workshops, audio visual production, 2020-21

In the framework of Sonsbeek 2020>2024, “Force Times Distance On Labour and its Sonic Ecologies”, I got invited by Aude Christel Mgba to be part of their educational and public program with this project about unconscious values of labour in children- en folksongs. By the project ‘Songs of Colonial Labour” I am focusing on European children’s songs and the labour values that are propagated by these songs, hidden between the lines of their lyrics–values that communicate gendered, classist and/or racist notions of labour on the one hand, or that resist or empower on the other. How can we commonly start to uncover these values hidden within well-known lyrics, to critically examine and understand their entangled value systems; strengthening values aimed to empower, whilst overcoming values that aim to oppress?

In this context I had conducted several workshops in May and August 2021 for people between 15-99 years where we thought together what it means to re-script the textes together. Look at some of the new lyrics here.

In the framework of the public program of Sonsbeek20<24 on 27th of August 2021 musician Kate Donkor and I took the audience on a journey guided by the Old Dutch folk song “Daar was eens een meisje loos”. I was presenting my research about a collection of folk-children songs communicating unequal  labour relations and social discrimination and the co-production on the audio-visual production with the musician Kate Donkor. Some of participants of the workshops, Hans Marcelis, Jan Meijering, Frauke De Gruyter, Ineke Mol and Piet Bakker were reciting their new texts, based on the original lyrics. I was inviting the audience to look, listen and speculate about the meaning of collectively transcribing the lyrics of songs. Which associations and memories does this kind of songs trigger around the notion of labour?

Listen hear to the audio recording (in Dutch) of 27th of August 2021: LINK

Watch here the documentation of that special evening:

The animation film and its' variations:
1. Songs of Colonial Labour - with the voices of several grandmothers.

2. A choir of voices.

3. New Lyrics