AUDE MGBA LET’S MAKE SOME SPACE                                                                                                                                             

Water na Water

An online gathering with Em’kal Eyongakpa and Chantal Edie part of  Forecast Forum edition #5

Water na Water was an online gathering to reflect the war that is silently destroying the peace of the people from the  historically known Southern Cameroon or today as Ambazonia.
This conflict is a consequence of a colonial and postcolonial history that needs to be unfolded, excavated, revealed, confronted and enunciated so that people from afar but also from within, specially people identifying as supporters of the one and indivisible Republic of Cameroon, can understand the urgency of being in solidarity with our sisters, brothers, sons, daughters that have been considered for many years as second class citizens.
“Water na water”, water is water, as the Ambazonians fought against the Republic of Cameroon military force, has been the catch phrase they used as a sign of resistance and determination.
Astrida Neimamis says:
“Water is a connector, a differentiator, a facilitator, a communicator. It brings all kinds of bodies into intimate contact, despite and because of our differences. It respects membranes and containers, but it knows that eventually every dam breaks, every bag leaks. It takes a lot of abuse, but still keeps going around—for billions of years so far!”
Water na Water was an invitation to drag into a conversation that connects us as bodies of water. Water as an element for moving forward to knowing and acting by acknowledging that some of us are drowning and swept away.

This gathering invited Chantal Edie and Em’kal Eyongakpa, two artists that are originally from the region where the war is happening and who have been in many ways, strongly affected by that.

Chantal participation was a reading, listening meditation on the place of women within this History of resistance: The story of No Mercy.
Em’kal’s contribution an intercession, an intermedia session to meditate on the situation. It is a video that confronts Cameroon nationalism in sound and sights by highlighting ordinary voices and sights from remote villages and bushes within historical Southern Cameroon.

Chantal Edie Ntube 
As one of few practicing female photographers, a cultural worker and an artist from the marginalized Southern Anglophone Cameroon, Chantal Edie’s experience and practice invites collective reflections on issues of social injustice, exclusion and marginalisation of minority groups.  After being forced herself to flee the Southern Cameroon city of Kumba to Douala, Chantal has managed to continue using her practice to reach out and educate the community, focusing on groups of Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) in Douala. She is co-founder of the art space The Forest Creative Loft and initiator of the networking platform Women Who Brunch (WWB), a digital and physical platform created to discuss social issues and to uplift and empower the socially disadvantaged.  Both existing platforms have been working physically and digitally since 2017 with different groups in the community, especially IDPs and women and have built a participatory audience of over 700 people. . 

Em'kal Eyongakpa (b. 1981, Eshobi-Mamfe, Kɛnyaŋ/Dɛnya) Eyongakpa's recent ideas increasingly draw from indigenous knowledge systems, ethnobotany, applied mycology and technology. He is also known for itinerant research spaces and autonomous art hubs; KHaL! SHRINE (Yaounde, (2007-2013), Bɔɔ Bɛtɔk/ ɛfúkúyú, (Amsterdam, 2017-). Eyongakpa holds degrees in Plant biology and Ecology from the University of Yaounde 1 and was a resident at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam. The artist's work has been shared/experienced at several gatherings and venues around the world.

You can find the recording of this gathering here :