‘Ways of Understanding, Voodoo/Vodun’ looks into a variety of representations of Vodun, the official state religion in Benin, West Africa. This religion became known under the general term ‘Voodoo’, and occurs in our commonplace thinking as something that relates to primitive belief, human sacrifice and black magic.

I researched the Western representation of Vodun from three different perspectives: colonial archives, anthropological museums and Hollywood films. Next to that, I question my own presumptions by engaging in conversations with Alfred Quenum, a high priest in Vodun. Followed by a journey into his personal practice in Benin.

This project deals with the complexity of understanding a culture strange and unfamiliar to my own.

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Installation view, Graduation Festival, the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague
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Click here to listen to Alfred Quenum's interpretation of the objects
Exerpt of Hollywood's Fabrication (15:00)
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