08-07-2019 – Rotterdam
Right from the start, this project was really inspirational for me. Because it
immediately asked me to dig through my knowledge of Feijenoord as a
resident of the South.
It was also really nice to see how diverse the group was and how well almost everyone clicked with each other. It was a real fruitful gathering of different ideas, backgrounds and disciplines. The only hard part was that the group was so big and it was too difficult to come together with the whole group for the meetings. So I think it would’ve been better if we would have found a solution for this problem from the start. That way we could’ve been way more efficient when coming up with a plan or ideas for the project.
Another problem was that we where being too nice with each other. So we didn’t challenge each other too often with ideas or critiques and didn’t want to impose ideas for the project on each other. That resulted in us not moving forward quick enough. It also resulted in every meeting being like a discussion instead of a workshop to work out ideas and give each other feedback on the ongoing projects. It also didn’t help that MAMA didn’t give us a clear idea of what the roadmap for this project was going to be like and what we had to do in each stage of the whole process.
One other personal problem that I was dealing with within the group was that I was really focussed on doing one big group project instead of each of the members focussing on their own projects. This stood in contrast with how the rest of the group was thinking, so when everyone had an idea of the kind of project they would like to do, I still didn’t had any idea for an individual project. It took me some time to start figuring out what i would like to do. But now I am doing my own kind of research to establish an idea for what to do. There are so many issues that I would like to tackle, but the project needs to be feasible for the timespan we are working in. So I’m still figuring out which issue it is that I would like to comment on.
We had some workshops throughout de project, but I didn’t find all of them interesting. There where 2 or 3 standout workshops that really opened the minds to new ideas and directions. These where the workshop of Stacii, the guy from the 180cc movie and Teana Boston-Mammah. I found the rest not to be too relevant to our project, because most of them where focussed on writing poems, while there are more different and interesting ways to tell stories. I liked Stacii’s workshop because it gave us a really good insight in how to gather stories from different communities. It also showed how interesting it is to focus some attention on the different communities living together and to really delve into their culture and show the juxtaposition with the surrounding and overall culture and traditions.
Teana’s workshop was really nice because she asked the hard questions about identity, race and our position in a white-dominated space we should ask ourselves as culturally diverse artists. Both of the workshops where way to short and could’ve easier been longer and still be interesting.
We also went on a weekend trip too Bruges in Belgium. It was a really nice and eye opening trip. You could say that I gained some creative confidence during our time there. I learned how to push myself even further out of the box and how -what at first seems like- absurd or wacky ideas can be implemented to have a social impact. It also thought me to see a city as a playground and treat it accordingly, while respecting the culture.