This research is ongoing. It takes the pace and shape of a continuous returning and a slow mounding. The research skirts the external and internal while I physically navigate and trace the narrative and stories that have emerged in relation to kung fu in Madagascar, and my own practice. I do this through the practice of spending time at the material places of importance to this narrative and traces of it left behind and build from there: Analakely market in Antananarivo, the Indian Ocean, fragments of documents found and gifted, but most importantly through conversations with people and the leads that they provide.
Conversations around the Kung Fu Uprisings in Antananarivo
This body of work contains ongoing research that spans several years into the mysteries surrounding the narrative about the gong fu uprisings in the 1980s in Antananarivo, Madagascar. The research includes attempts to trace paths through the multiple conflicting stories relating to this narrative found in the Analakely Market in Antananarivo. It includes: surprise conversations that occured through researching 'on-the-ground; designed projects with a woman who trained when gong fu was made illegal and forced underground; concerns and reflections on following leads in places where I am an outsider; clippings, booklets, graphic novels and other research fragments found along the way; found objects in Antananarivo; further research into the role that martial arts plays within uprisings and movements against hegemonic power in the so called subaltern world.
The work on this page demonstrates an array of visual, sonic and other experimental manifestations of the research so far. Many of these pieces explore how to bring across an ambiguity that exists due to the multiplicity of small and large overlapping, conflicting and strengthening narratives. The visual component explores sound and animation within documentary making when anonymity is required. It centres women's narratives on the topic and questions where the repositories of this history lie. The creative approach favours and works with fragmented pieces found along the way by being present and engaging in conversation.