Tiago Borges e Yonamine
A UFO is a thing that comes from the future – a future that we might never arrive at, that doesn’t belong to us, but that might show us some place where we could be, some instruments we could make use of, some time when everything will be different. An object we didn’t design but perhaps dreamt of, it makes present a time and a place that is not quite ours, and a set of items, informations and tools we don’t fully recognise. It might work, however, as an image that reflects on the world that we consider ours, and make apparent its size, its limitations and its possibilities. It expands it, and may even save it from (self-)destruction.
Yonamine and Borges’s AfroUFO comes from a black future, a future we don’t know much about. Black, ‘as the colour of my true love’s hair’, are its engines, which leave a track of pollution where it passes by. Black are the people within it, in different shades of it. This blackness is the blackness of a shared colonial history, that of Angola, where Yonamine and Borges come from – a colonial history shared by the place where it has landed, Brazil. It is also the blackness of the electricity shortages that still affect Luanda more than a decade after the end of a 26-year-long civil war.
But the AfroUFO is also a source of light. Its walls frame a mythical vessel where all that Africa has ever produced is symbolically housed: still and moving images, music, sounds, words… The vessel with its contents is a time-bomb that, after landing, might xplode and infect our world with what has been suppressed during 500 years of oblivion and exploitation. Once that happens, we might become a new type of creature and find a new way of inhabiting an earth that will no longer be the one we know. – PL