Biography

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The question of the construction of identity in a mass production society is at the heart of Elisabeth Bakambamba Tambwe’s plastic and choreographic work. This approach is a form of response to current debates on the issues of national identity, citizenship and integration, as reflection is often paralyzed by the impossibility of thinking outside the logic of mono-belonging and refusal to give to mixed-culture, experience of multi-belonging, a political translation.

The ethnic and geographical classifications, the ethnographic and culturalist approaches that generally enclose the productions of African artists living in Europe constitute ambiguous conditions of visibility and recognition. Between the hammer of the global (globalization and its standards) and that of the local (the withdrawal and the colonial legacy of a falsified vision of “tradition”), Elisabeth Bakambamba Tambwe proposes an ironic deconstruction of the exoticism and attempts a decolonization of the minds.

In the latest shows, the performative mode is predominant and involves voice, music, worked environments, and videoprojection mixed with the calculated occupation of the space dedicated to the public, often invited to move or even divide, forcing the viewer to rethink its function.

With pieces such as Las Meninas (2016) and Congo Na Chanel (2017) the question of the point of view extends the post-colonial question. The last shows of Elisabeth Bakambamba Tambwe tend to show the multiplicity of angles of view which imply different perceptions of the same reality. Because consciousness is like the visual field. This is not a framed image seen by a third external eye, it is captured without distance and, although limited (it is impossible for us to see what is happening behind us), it has no edges: limited and yet without “border”. The various scenographic devices used, then allow to scramble the cards, unmask conventions (especially repressed), caress ambiguities and thus stage the many incoherent postures that assail us.

We perceive only what exists or has the appearance of it, inside and outside us, and we have, it seems, no other sign of reality than the perception we have of it. But are all perceptions equal? (“Jeder hat seine eigene Wahrheit”)

In the work of Elisabeth Bakambamba Tambwe, nothing is ever delivered to us in its totality. The sets, the actions, the presence of the bodies on the plateau always present themselves under a particular face, in a determined perspective. What grips the eye always exceeds our perception since there is always the possibility of other perceptions, corrections. Here, perception cannot exhaust the action. If the perception is incomplete, it is because it is always surrounded by a sort of halo of indeterminacy, the possibility of other probable perceptions or even future ones.

For the choreographer, a point of view does not allow to perceive; it is necessary to know how to shake it according to what is at stake and to others’ point of view. Recognizing the limits, the obscurity, the “incomplete” character of men and of ideas does not imply abandoning them. On the contrary, this conscious doubt, this critical reconsideration, opens the way to a transcendence, a projection of the body forward, commitment.

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Performances

CARRÉ NOIR  Performance, dance and installation – 01-2020

  • A co-production by DIG UP PRODUCTIONS and brut Wien in cooperation with Afro_Vibes Performing Arts Festival Amsterdam.
  • With the kind support of the City of Vienna’s Department of Cultural Affairs and the Vienna Dance Festival.
  • With the support of the Federal Chancellery Art and Culture.

 ABSTRACTION  Performance, dance and installation – 12-2019

  • Production DIG-UP Productions

JEANNE DARK  Performance, dance and installation – 11-2019

  • A co-production of Verein zur Förderung der Bewegungsfreiheit and brut Wien.
  • With the kind support of the Department of Cultural Affairs of the City of Vienna.

FOCUS : NEW PERSPECTIVES  Performance, dance and installation – 09-2018

  • Production DIG-UP Productions

CONGO NA CHANEL Performance, dance and installation – 06-2017

  • Production DIG-UP Production
  • Co-production Wiener Festwochen
  • Thanks to la compagnie de danse La Vème Dimension, Dakar (Senegal)
  • Supported by Kulturabteilung der Stadt Wien and BKA   Bundeskanzleramt Osterreich

MUSA PARADISIACA Performance, dance and installation – 06-2017

  • Production DIG-UP Production

PINK EYE Performance, dance and installation – 10-2016

  • Commissioned by steirischer herbst
  • Project management by Roland Gfrerer
  • Technical management by Karl Masten

LAS MENINAS Performance, dance and installation – 05-2016

  • Production: Dig Up Productions
  • Supported by: MA7 Kulturabteilung der Stadt Wien, Bundeskanzleramt Kunst/Kultur
  • Co-production: Tanzquartier Wien.

FLECHE Performance, dance and installation – 05-2016

  • Co-production: DIG-UP Productions, DONAUFESTIVAL

FIT IN Performance, dance and installation – 07-2015

  • Co-production: DIG-UP Productions, Impulstanz, supported by MUMOK MUSEUM

SYMPOSIUM Performance, dance and installation – 01-2015

  • Co-production: DIG-UP Productions,Tanzquartier
  • Supported by: MA7 VIENNA, BMUKK and LONG LIFE BURNING

GOLDEN BABY Solo – 09-2011

  • Co-production: DIG-UP Productions and WUK Theatre
  • Supported by: MA7 VIENNA

ANOMALIC Performance and installation – 05-2010

  • Co-production: Staatsaffaire et WUK Theatre
  • Supported by: MA7 VIENNA
  • In collaboration with: Théâtre LE GARAGE Roubaix (France)

DON’T STEP ON MY JERSEY Performance – 01-2010

  • Production: MOVING CULTURE VIDC

REACT IN SILENCE,PLEASE Performance, dance and installation – 09-2008

  • Project developed within “TURBO RESIDENCE 2008” coached by Thierry Bae
  • IMPULSTANZ FESTIVAL 2009.

CONCERTO POUR CORPS BRUYANTS Performance and dance – 11-2007

  • Co-production : Cie DIXIT et VIVAT THEATRE ARMENTIÈRE (France)

MON COEUR BALANCE Solo, dance – 05-2005

  • Production : Cie DIXIT
  • In collaboration with: LA CONDITION PUBLIQUE (Roubaix), LA COMÉDIE DE BETHUNE (Béthune), THEATRE MASSENET (Lille).

FRÉMISSEMENT Performance, dance and music – 09-2003

  • Production : Cie DIXIT

LA LÉGENDE DE BAKI Performance, dance and music – 09-2002

  • Production : Cie DIXIT

NO ! Performance, dance and music – 09-2001

  • Production : Cie DIXIT

PETITES CHOSES DEVIENDRONT GRANDES Performance, dance and music – 09-2000

  • Production : Cie DIXIT

Collaborations

PERFUME by Mirabella Paidamwojo Dziruni, Zion Flex and Eric Vale – 2020

NANA OU EST-CE QUE TU CONNAIS LE BARA ? by Monika Gintersdorfer – 2019

TARZAN by God’s Entertainment 2019

LES NOUVEAUX ARISTOCRATES by Monika Gintersdorfer – 2017

APPROXIMATION LINÉAIRE by Esther Stocker – 2017

FROM THE FUTURE by Esther Stocker – 2016

A THIRD STEP TO IDEAL PARADISE by Claudia Bosse/THEATERCOMBINAT – 2015

100 PAS PRESQUE by Taoufiq Izzediou – 2014

WAR by Amanda Piña and de Daniel Zimmermann – 2013

IN A WORLD FULL OF BUTTERFLIES, IT TAKES BALLS TO BE….. by Robyn Orlin – 2013

BABYSITTING TÊTE DE CIRE by Robyn Orlin – 2012

END OF FEMINISM With Dolce After Ghana in WUK  and DONAU FESTIVAL – 04-2012

HAVE YOU HUGGED, KISSED AND RESPECTED YOUR BROWN VENUS TODAY? by Robyn Orlin – 2011

EASY COME, EASY GO by Oleg Soulimenko – 2009

CONFIT DE CANARD by Robyn Orlin – 2007

RADIO OKAPI by Faustin Linyekula – 2006

LAS BAS PEUT-ÊTRE by Graciane Finzi with the “Orchestre Nationale de Montpellier”- 2006

LA NOTTE BIANCA by Katina Genero /Cie Kaïdara – 10-2004

SAFARA, IL FUOCO DEI TAMBURI by Katina Genero /Cie Kaïdara – 10-2004

BOYAKODAH by Georges Momboye – 07-08-09-2004

ET DEMAIN  by Serge-Aimé Coulibaly – 11-2003

AQUA VIOLINA by Anne Selliez –02-1999

 

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Ateliers avec présentation publique

LA PHILOSOPHIE BANANE a workshop with the Cie OISEAU-MOUCHE of Roubaix – 05-2012

MARIE ANTOINETTE… C’EST MOI!? a workshop with the association “the Black Security Company” et the support by Schwarze Frauen Community – 06-2011

YOU, MY HERO with SCHULKOLLECTIV Wahringerstrasse Vienna – 12 -2010

J’AI ACCOUCHÉ D’UN NEGRE a workshop with the Cie OISEAU-MOUCHE of Roubaix – 05-2010

MA LUMIÈRE a workshop during the “LE MANIFESTE” festival in Grande-Synthe – 07-2008

 

Exhibitions

STORIES OF TRAUMATIC PASTS Weltmuseum Wien – 10-2020 to 04-2021

UND SCHWESTER MAKART GEHT AUF WANDERSCHAFT Künstlerhaus 1050 – 12-2019

LA PHILOSOPHIE BANANE Weltmuseum Wien – 03-2014

OCCUPY THE MUSEUM Weltmuseum Wien – 08-2013

GOOSEFLESH Exposition de groupe durant Impulstanz Festival – 07-2012

STILL LIFE VIDC Möllwaldplatz 5/3, 1040 Vienna – 03-2011

THE BARBIE TRAP Soho Ottakring, Vienna – 05-2010

 

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