Kevin Osepa

Klof, Bario di Spiritu

A man once encountered two sisters in the Kloof, who told him he would crow like a rooster. When he got home he crowed like a rooster, collapsed, and was dead.

About this project

On Curaçao is a place so feared that some people don’t even dare speak about it. A place of dark forces and a fraught history. This place is called the ‘Kloof’, meaning ‘chasm’ or ‘gorge’. It is formed by two roads that run parallel for about three hundred metres. Both roads are lined with trees whose tops grow together to create a kind of tunnel – giving this spot its name.

During the great slave revolt of 1795 (the most important rebellion leading up to the abolition of slavery), the Kloof was the site of a bloody confrontation between the enslaved people and the Dutch colonists. Though the associations with slavery have faded, it is still considered a place of evil and dark forces to this day. The people of Curaçao tell many stories about the sinister side of this spot. Statistically, a larger number of fatal car crashes also seem to happen here compared to the rest of the island. With his project, Kevin Osepa offers a new perspective on slavery in the past. This is not the perspective we find in Dutch history books, but the perspective of the stories that arose at this location.

 

 

Kevin Osepa at Stroom, The Hague
Forhanna and BredaPhoto have been supporting visual artist Kevin Osepa in the realisation of his ongoing project Klof, 
Bario di Spiritu. The next instalment of this project is showing 
in October at the Stroom art centre in The Hague. Osepa 
was one of five artists, including Neo Matloga and Anna Dasov, 
to be selected for an award from the Hartwig Art Collection Production Fund, which supports new work and exhibitions.

> STROOM DEN HAAG

© Kevin Osepa

© Kevin Osepa

About the artist: Kevin Osepa

Kevin Osepa was born on Curaçao. He studied at the Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU) and currently lives in the Netherlands. Much of his work centres on Afro-Caribbean identity in a post-colonial world, though told from a personal viewpoint. He uses images to explore how the culture, spiritual beliefs and rituals of Curaçao have shaped and constructed his own identity. Though frequently autobiographical, the themes he chooses can also be seen as anthropological studies, examining questions of Afro spirituality, sexuality, masculinity, decolonialisation and family in visual stories crafted using a range of (sometimes experimental) techniques.
Osepa was the winner of the ING Unseen Talent Award 2019 and has been nominated for awards including the Volkskrant Beeldende Kunst Prijs 2018 and Steenbergen Stipendium 2017.

What Forhanna did

Forhanna is supporting this project because it ties in with Forhanna’s objectives. BredaPhoto and Forhanna are co-producers of the project. Thematically, its relevance consists in the personal interpretation it gives of a history that has been partly obscured until now, having been told primarily from a European perspective. Also, the fear of the unfamiliar feels more topical now than ever.

The project’s format is also interesting for Forhanna and BredaPhoto. With its many layers and facets, the project lends itself to presentation on a variety of platforms. It will be shown at festivals, in museums (Amsterdam Museum – REFRESH – december 11th, 2020 – march 28th 2021) and commercial galleries, as a book and online. Within the model developed by Forhanna/BredaPhoto, ‘Kloof, village of spirits’ thus furnishes a new case.

© Kevin Osepa

If you want to learn more about this project send your contact details to info@forhanna.com.
We will contact you as soon as possible to answer all your questions.

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