Invisible Border: Nigerian Photographers and Writers on the Road to Bamako

Via Bisi Silva’s blog who in turn found it at the new Invisible Borders Blog.

Inspired by the 8th edition of the Bamako Photography Encounters 2009, 10 Nigerians made up of photographers and writers decided to make a road trip to Bamako from Lagos: in a black Volks Wagen Mini bus rented from Photo Garage in Lagos. This project arose as a result of an urgent need to address the notion of dividing borders between countries in the African continent. It might sound paradoxical that while travelling by air might seem a lot faster and much more stress-free, it indeed suggests a feeling of immense “distance” between places, given that one might call the singular borders suggested by the airport terminals as “virtual”, not tangible, providing a rather fictitious notion of displacement in real time; more so due to the absence of land scapes and other elements which serves as visual testimony to distance covered. Therefore this project is an attempt to acquire a much realistic sense of the similarities and difference between peoples suggested by cultural and geographical lines.

The project has been termed “Invisible Borders”: a reference to the non-geographical demarcation, but rather that which could be easily missed especially if looking at the lines in the map, or flying over by air.

The most essential aspect of the project is not the final destination, but the journey; therefore the participating photographers will produce works in form of photography and video while on the go which will be exhibited during the main events of the Festival in Bamako.

Participants include:

Uche James Iroha, Lucy Azubuike, Emeka Okereke, Amaize Ojiekere, Uche Okpa Iroha, Ray Daniels Okeugo, Unoma Geise, Chris Nwobu, Nike Ojeikere, Charles Okereke.

Dates scheduled for Travel are as followed:

3rd of November: Participants leave Lagos,

6th of November: Participant arrive in Bamako

15th of November: Participants leave Bamako

18th of November: Participants arrive in Lagos.

Borders Involved:

Nigeria/Benin (Seme), Benin/Togo (Grand Popo), Togo/Ghana (Aflao), Ghana /Burkina fasso (Paga), Burkina Fasso/ Mali.

This should be an interesting journey to follow, shouldn’t it? Oh, in case you were interested in the Bamako programme, here it is. Also, check the website of the Maison Africain de la Photographie (hope I got the spelling right, my French is practically non-existent).

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