This screening of Karikpo Pipeline by Zina Saro-Wiwa is part of the Dusk exhibition series which presents artworks to be experienced from outside the gallery space. The screenings/installations will be fully visible after dark and all are being shown for the first time in London.
Karikpo Pipeline is 5-channel video installation made in 2015 in Ogoniland in the Niger Delta by video artist Zina Saro-Wiwa.
Karikpo is a playful masquerade, unique to the Ogoni people of the Niger Delta. The masquerade – whose masks and movements mimic the antelope – features dramatic feats of acrobatic agility among its male performers and is played for entertainment at least once a year. In Karikpo Pipeline, Saro-Wiwa transposes the dancers’ performances over signs of oil infrastructure in Ogoniland: exposed pipelines, an old wellhead with pollution-soaking sand surrounding it, roads where pipelines had previously lined the landscape, roads where the pipelines still exist but are buried, and a rusting, decommissioned flow station. Filmed with a drone camera, the work offers an opportunity to view the Niger Delta with an eye that conjures surveillance not only by petroleum interests but also by invisible spiritual forces.
Karikpo Pipeline gives visual and embodied form to human relationships with environment, teasing out the physical and emotional dynamics that frame cultural value systems for Ogoni land. At once futuristic and primordial, Karikpo Pipelineexposes the pipelines that traverse the land that are visible and invisible. The work asks, what constitutes true custodianship of the land and where does power lie?
Curated by Zoe Whitley, Tate Modern Adjunct Research Curator
Supported by Guaranty Trust Bank Plc