The dutch company VLISCO is producing batik fabrics all of us immediately regard as authentic african. Researching on this one is forced to concern oneself with the peculiar situation of interweaved, imposed and inherited cultural identities.
How does it fit to our stereotype that this fabric, which became such a strong symbol for the celebration of postcolonial independency is actually designd by the dutch? The path opened by this little question leads far. Where do our strereotypes come from? To which extent is cultur original? What do we build our identities out of? What do we regard as typical african, what as european? How do we deal in the postcolonial age with our guilt for colonial crimes?
My research is in particular focusing on „the swing“ made by the british-nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare, who is using the dutch wax as a kind of trademark in his work and somehow seems to be related to all questions mentioned above.