Updates and work in progress

22 August, 2012

Making More Things with Words

I first met Adama Woni in Banzon, in the house of Bakari Ouattara, the musician who played at my initiation. Adama is from the Dafing country, a village near the border with Mali, but spent most of his life in Banfora. He moved to Banzon in 2011, but keeps travelling all over Burkina. He is…

26 June, 2012

Rhythm at Work

Rhythm at Work is a short video I realised to account for the musical quality of manual work as I witnessed here in Burkina Faso. I first prepared a short montage of four different working situations, then added out-of-sync footage using the waveform as a reference. The result is very quick-paced.

10 June, 2012

What a Donso Wears

This is, so far, perhaps the post with the longest preparation I put together. I started gathering material in October 2011, and now can say I have more or less assembled all the materials I needed. Its focus is the characteristic uniform of the donsow, a powerful means of identification recognised by both initiated members and…

10 April, 2012

Women Fishing

In a previous post I wrote about the annual collective hunts that involve the male population in Karankasso, during the dry season, and after the ritual of the kurusa. For women it is forbidden to participate to the tèen, even to go into the bush in the direction the hunters will take. The tèen concludes with…

20 March, 2012

How to Make Things with Words

It all started a couple of months ago when Si-Juma Konaté, after we met for filming the building of the Sambla balafon, brought a photocopy to my hunting companion Lasso. Si-Juma described the piece of paper, that seemed to have been kept folded in a wallet for a long time, as a powerful arabic writing…

15 February, 2012

The Cry of the Hyena

Once upon a time a hyena came to feed at night in Karankasso, in a hole under the tall trees I see from my house. She brought her cubs to eat the earth men dug out of the hole. One night, she was left without her offspring. According to a version, they were killed by…

30 December, 2011

Yere Majigi

Donso music is usually associated with donson’goni, the six-stringed harp-lute played by the musicians of the brotherhood. Sometimes I saw a few drums being added, but only with a secondary role. The foreground is taken by the bard’s voice, and instrumental music often represents just a background for his praises and epic songs. With surprise I…