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Metathesiophobia 2011
Digital HD file, 16:9, 100 minutes and 54 seconds, b&w, sound
Performers: Elisabete Goncalves, Zenaida Alfama Medina and Irineu Destourelles
Camera: LuÌs Carlos Fontes de Alencar Filho and Mamadou Diop; Direct sound: by David Medina; With thanks to Joel Zito Araujo.
A cropped long single-shot footage of three characters sitting at a table, who pack the white powdery content of plastic containers, runs with and off-screen voice that reads Rene Descartes's Meditations on First Philosophy (1641).
For the sound, an extract from an audiobook of Meditations on First Philosophy was cut into sentences which were then aleatory re-edited. The reading maintains its authoritative tone but at close scrutiny it lacks discernible meaning. From 2009-2011 I lived in the harbour city of Mindelo, in my native Cape Verde. In that context, I witnessed two interconnected issues: the lure that drug-trafficking had upon many poor young men and women towards fulfilling narratives of success; the lure that western values had upon wealthier residents which lead to sections of this group emulating Western life-styles, reconfiguring them into new local practices.