Video

Zina Saro-Wiwa's 'Eaten By the Heart'

Zina Saro-Wiwa's new video installation "Eaten By the Heart" explores how love and intimacy are not universal, but can in fact be culturally informed.


Produced by Zina Saro-Wiwa, Eaten By the Heart is a compelling video installation and documentary project which explores the cultural specificity of the performance of love. The first sequence, "Eaten By the Heart I" is perhaps the most popular and poses the question "How do Africans kiss?" While the first sequence follows standard documentary format, the second and third installments favour a more evocative tone through experimental integration of these personal expressions of intimacy and heartbreak. As Saro-Wiwa states,

“So many of us cite with confidence that Love Is Universal. But the performance of love is, it seems, cultural. I wonder how the impact of how we choreograph and culturally organize the performance of love impacts what we feel inside and who we become.”

In Part III, through a "breathing orchestra" Saro-Wiwa collates the voices and faces of different bodies throughout the African diaspora while they share their personal experiences of love, intimacy, and family. Phrases such as "I am not alone, but I am lonely" and "When I think of black love, I don't think of butterflies in an open field" blend with the sounds of breathing bodies and individual histories of how love has come to mean through culturally-specific ways of knowing and feeling. It does no justice to the installation to explain or catalog the different components with words, so take a look at the visually astounding "Eaten By the Heart Part III: Breathing Orchestra" below. Trust, it will be five minutes well spent. Also check parts I and II here.

News Brief
Photo by Ian Dickson/Redferns (via Getty Images)

New Fela Kuti Reissues & Box Set Are Coming This Year

Partisan Records has shared initial news of upcoming Fela 50th anniversary reissues and a new box set on the way.

Fela Kuti fans have a lot to look forward to this year as Partisan Records (home to Fela's catalog) has announced plans to release special reissues of two 1971 albums: London Scene and Live! With Ginger Baker, the classic album in which Fela and his band Africa '70 where joined by the Cream drummer.

The label has also said they plan to release the fifth installment in their ongoing Fela vinyl reissue box set series, which are handpicked by notable names in the music world. Previous volumes have been curated by Erykah Badu, Questlove, and Brian Eno.

Partisan has also shared that they will also be launching a scholarship program at Fela's alma mater, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, in London this year. The label will be sharing more information on all of that exciting Fela Kuti 2021 news soon, so keep and eye out.

In the meantime, Fela Kuti is currently leading the fan vote for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. You can head here to cast a daily ballot for the afrobeat legend. Voting is capped at one ballot per day.

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