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Chinwe Nnajiuba: „I won’t be easily intimidated“

Chinwe Pam Nnajiuba aka Juba is a Berlin-based DJ. In this interview she lets us know how she deals with conflict and discrimination whilst empowering herself through music.

Interview: Valerie-Siba Rousparast

Chinwe Nnajiuba (Foto: Valerie-Siba Rousparast)

CfC: You’re originally from the UK with a background in Nigeria. What brings you to Berlin?

Chinwe Nnajiuba: I moved to Berlin because I wanted to escape London. I was living at home with my parents and felt like I needed to spread my wings and capitalise upon this time in my life to be independent. As long as I was in London I didn’t think I could do that.

I think what gave Berlin the edge for me is that it’s relatively close to the UK and affordable. Additionally I had learnt German in school, so I thought it would be the ideal place to improve my German – however Berlin is the worst place for that because everyone insists on talking English.

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10-05-2018—17:00 h—Chinwe Nnajiuba: „I won’t be easily intimidated“

Deaf Stress Factor: Hearing Ignorance

The event focuses on audism.

Audism refers to decades of discrimination of Deaf People. Hearing and speaking are define what is seen as normal. Deaf people are seen as having a defecit, and sign language is devalued. Are hearing poeple so self-assured that they ignore audism? When do conflicts start? How does the Deaf Community relate to queer-feminsim? And to racism?

We are engaging with conflicts within and beyond the Deaf Community. This involves reflection on the KLIRRRRR festival and to Caring for Conflict.

When: Saturday, October 27, 2018 at 6pm (program starts at 7pm)
Where: aquarium (Südblock), Skalitzer Str. 6, Berlin-Kreuzberg
We: Xenia Dürr, Silvia Gegenfurtner, Simone Lönne,  Melanie Loy.

In German Sign Language (DGS) translated into spoken German.

Die DGS-Verdolmetschung und weitere Maßnahmen zur Barrierearmut des KLIRRRRR festivals queerer Konfliktkulturen wurden gefördert von Aktion Mensch.Funded by Aktion Mensch.

Facilitated by the Institute for Queer Theory (iQt) as part of Caring for Conflict. Contributing to the series When does it Become Violence.

09-30-2018—23:36 h—Arena

Three Artworks – Five Poems

Students of the Alice-Salomon-Hochschule tried to find access to the sound of three videos shown at the KLIRRRRR-Festival. Here Anna Letsiou writes how she heard Barikat (Mirkan Deniz, 2017) and Bisheh (Mary Ana, 2017).  Jule Gießler’s sound poems you find on the German page of the blog.

Barikat

Echoing metallic silence building shapes
building concrete barriers building positions

or turning them upside-down
stealing our four wheels
letting us no other vehicle to freedom
The poetry of a sound
is like climbing an imaginary ladder
to catch a piece of real sky
but the costume of this sky is always white
and the sun is hiding behind
was it sky’s costume?
Or was (he) forced to wear it?
Now the sound of your spray
Is raining black words
Braking this metallic silence
Some kind of nature
What kind of nature
Crinkle its waters
What kind of nature
Reflects the moon in mirrors
And grows proboscis on people’s faces?
What kind of nature rushes the water over stones

And keeps the rhythm of wandering?
What kind of nature
Supplies us with tools to scratch our culture on the ground? This kind of nature
That circles us all

Bisheh
I’m typing
That’s how I keep sounds of past
I’m projecting
I’m delivering these sounds to the future
She plays this melancholic music next to me
For my shadow to dance
She speaks words in an unknown language
I pin and pin the words faster and faster on paper
I like the music of my typing
It makes me remember how everything ends after the dots How everything starts after the dots
I like the music of my typing
It prepares the rhythm of my resistance
Step by step
Painting my stones purple
Painting my war black
Painting my love on the wall

By Anna Letsiou

07-10-2018—15:13 h—KLIRRRRR festival

„Everything Is Interrelated“

Part oft the Klirrrrr-Festival was the work of artist Tejal Shah and their piece „Some Kind of Nature“. In an interview we got to talk to Shah, who is currently based in Goa, India, about the meaning of nature, body and what it means to be a queer feminist artist.

Interview: Valerie-Siba Rousparast

Caring for Conflict: How did you start making art?
I studied commercial and illustrative photography in Australia. There I was first introduced to fine art practice. I started making art when I was eighteen and went to the Art Institute of Chicago as an exchange student. After that I immediately started to work as an artist, but went back to studying at Bard College in upstate New York, because I missed Academia. By that time education in the west was less and less appealing, but I didn’t see any other choices. For a while now, I have been studying the goddess Philosohy and am currently in a part-time Masters of Art, which will take another four years to complete.

Caring for Conflict: You speak of nature and the body. What are they in the context of your work?
I’m interested in the word „nature“ in the question of „what is the nature of things?“ Like this has become a broad category through which I can see a lot of things. I wonder, what is organic in nature and what is synthesized?

Bodies mean politics, they mean representation, they mean relation. What do bodies perform, what do they have to add. Everything is a body. But not all bodies have sentients. Everything is interrelated.

Caring for Conflict: Speaking of body, the individual, reflection. What does self-reflection mean to you?
Self is the functional self or the I, which is attributed to all sentient beings. By functional I mean: In order to exist within the functionality of the world, we have to attribute a selfhood to persons and to other beings, from creatures to so called complex organisms. For me they are just a nominal self and this is what I think of as the „Self“. On ultimate analysis there is no „Self“ that can be found since everything is an interdependent happening. And if it is an interdependent happening, we cannot say there is a Self.

Self-reflection is the ability to have the awareness that the nominal self ist he void of an inherent self. So if all the selfs that we see are interdependent happenings or events, for the sake of communication we must say I or You. So this ability to self-reflect that the nominal Self is selfless is what I would call Self-reflection.

Caring for conflict: Your work seems radical and political in the way it speaks about feminist issues. Do you consider it to be activism?
I would certainly consider my work feminist as well as interested in all forms of politics. Some works are more activist than others and at the moment I would not say that I am an activist, because I have not really seriously engaged with activism. But I feel that my work is very aware and also asking for change. System change, social change, mind change and affective change.

Caring for Conflict: What is your take on marginalization in the art scene?
There are many art scenes. And I work at the intersection of many different art scenes, so it’s hard to say. But I would say that in general all the art scenes are something that are created by human beings and I see all art scenes as a mini-representation of society. When we have people, who have not resolved questions of power and mutuality and relation, anger and sharing, we create art scenes, where we bring all that shit with us. Wherever we go, whatever we create, we bring that with us. So there is a lot of marginalization in different scenes. There are so many complicated layers to this.

Caring for Conflict: You work on body, self and non-duality. Do you consider your work spiritual?
If spiritual means understanding the nature of reality, so that we can align ourselves with things as they are and not misperceive them, because anything that is based on an misperception can only cause pain and violence, then that is how I understand spirituality. I would say that  Iam a student of a spiritual tradition and very interested in the question of duality. This process requires mindtransformation, calling different forms of convention into question.

 What does your working process look like?
Usually I like to engage with different themes through a long period of time through reading, watching, research, interaction with situations, environments, other beings, who are interested or embody those themes. Reading is a very important part of my process. After a long time of marinating myself in the topics of my interest, which can be one that segways into many different directions, comes a time, where I feel ready to share something. I don’t produce a lot of work and don’t have a formal aesthetic, which is consistantly visible through my work. It changes a lot in different media and techniques. I would basically pickle myself in a topic.

Caring for Conflict: What are your next steps?
My next steps, whoa. I tend to have an ongoing difficulty in integrating myself within the infrastructure of art and art support systems and I see that there are many aspects of myself which don’t fit into these scenes very easily. There aren’t many artists, who work on the intersection of feminism, queer feminism, buddhism, queer ecology or post-pornography. I often question the relevance of my work when it comes to social change. Is this the best use of my life on this planet? So, I am right now deeply engaging in a practice programme of non-duality and interested in how this translates in me as a person and perhaps finds expression in my work. I am more and more interested in education, spend time doing community based work and helping organisations and started a series of workshops on art and non-duality and am interested to offer this to students in different colleges in New-Delhi. Also i’ve just finished an artist residency with two other queer feminist artists.

Thank you for your time.  

07-02-2018—15:29 h—„Everything Is Interrelated“

Juni 15 + 16, 2018

KLIRRRRR Festival
[
RATTTTTLE festival]
Queer Cultures of Conflict

Grafik: EL BOUM

Program in English including information about German Sign Language (DGS), accessibility and childcare.

where: district (Malzfabrik) Berlin-Tempelhof

06-01-2018—15:48 h—KLIRRRRR festival
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