Keti Koti Project – Ala Sma Tori is my most recent, long-term project. With this project I would like to raise attention for Keti Koti, the commemoration of the abolition of slavery in Surinam and the Netherlands Antilles by the Netherlands on July 1st 1863 (or actually 1873 because forced labor still existed until that year). It would be good if this date, the first of July, became a National Holiday here in The Netherlands too, just like it is in Suriname, a day on which we all can look back and forward, a day to heal and to celebrate.
My project consists of portraits and stories of all kinds of people who commemorate and celebrate Keti Koti, as well as videos of songs / spoken word, and old photos. Hence subtitle Ala Sma Tori, i.e. Stories (Tori) of All / Allerlei (Ala) Mensen (People). The work will be shown in various exhibitions and installations, and, as of April 1st 2022, on the website I created for the project launched with an exhibition in Arti et Amicitiae’s Art Space from April 21st until April 29th 2022.
The first portrait I made was of Glenda. It was exhibited in M_M_Artspace in the summer of 2020. The second portrait in the series, Hillary, has been exhibited at CBK Zuidoost at the group exhibition Zomersalon Royaal, from July 1st until August 21st, 2021. Also at CBK Zuidoost, I was invited to install a pop up wall with the first series of portraits, including three drafts in pen on paper and nine finished ones, with pen and water colors, during the month of July 2021. After that a selection of three portrait series was on show at the yearly art members exhibition at Arti et Amicitiae: Salon 21.
A first solo exhibition with a big overview, will take place at the Open Space at Heesterveld, part of CBK Zuidoost, Amsterdam, from June 14th until July 15th 2022. The festive opening will be on July 1st, 2022, exact time: to be announced.
From June 2021, a series of ‘Keti Koti Portraits’ appears on the back page of Argus magazine.
- Keti Koti Portraits. Werkgroep Caraïbische Letteren, 2020
- Artist in the world, Linkmap #7 2020, BIJLMER
- Maartje Jaquet – Kunstenaar in de Bijlmer, 2021
- Keti Koti Project om te gedenken en herdenken, Jurjen van der Hoek, 1 april 2022