my own private cinema. Djibril Diop-Mambéty

Touki Bouki / Die kleine Verkäuferin der Sonne / Das Los

13.12.2011 18:00

Film evening

Djibril Diop Mambéty was considered one of the most important and unconventional directors of the African continent, his films making a key contribution to the development of African cinema. Mambéty was a close friend of the artists Issa Samb and El Hadji Sy, both of whom are represented in the exhibition Antje Majewski. The World of Gimel. How to Make Objects Talk. They all belong to the Laboratoire Agit’Art, an experimental group which developed a different kind of art in Senegal. In early 2010 Antje Majewski, together with El Hadji Sy, developed a discourse on objects, around which the exhibition revolves. El Hadji Sy established a connection between Antje’s meteorites and a large round stone, which is located in the garden in front of his studio in Dakar. He searched for this stone for Mambéty after the latter’s death and found it like this, he said – and invested in it symbolic significance. After his return Antje Majewski began to look at Mambéty’s films, which impressed her very much. Like Alejandro Jodorowsky, to whom a film evening is dedicated as part of the exhibition, Mambéty works with strong pictures, which tell modern, many-layered, surreal myths.


Touki Bouki
Time and again it is children and youths in African cinema who stand for hope of a better future. And it is no different in this imaginatively narrated classic. Mory and Anta dream of travelling to Paris to the “promised land” that Josephine Baker has sung of. He is a shepherd, yet his herds were led to the slaughterhouse. Ever since Mory has driven around town on his motorbike, which he has decorated in memory of his zebus with two horns. Anta is a young female student who likewise lives on the fringes of society. Mambéty tells the story in an unconventional, non-linear way, making reality and imagination interweave. Mambéty received the International Critics’ Prize in Cannes for Touki Bouki. 
(1973, 95 min, Wolof with German subtitles


Das Los/Fate
Cheerful musician Marigo’s life is made hard by his nasty landlord. As his rent is in arrears, she has confiscated his congoma. To get his instrument back, Marigo bets on the state lottery and fate has good things in store for him...
(1994, 45 min, Wolof with German subtitles)


Die kleine Verkäuferin der Sonne/The Small Vendor of the Sun 
All the newspaper vendors on the streets of Dakar are boys, but the 12-year-old girl Sili, who can only walk with the aid of crutches, does not want to accept this. She too wants to be able to sell newspapers with courage and fortitude. A hymn to the friendship and bravery of street children. 
(1999, 45 min, Wolof with German subtitles)

Djibril Diop Mambéty, born in Colobane near Dakar in Senegal in 1945, first completed training as an actor, and worked in numerous Senegalese and Italian films. In the 1970s he spent a longer period of time in Rome, meeting among others Pier Paolo Pasolini. He became known through his films Touki Bouki (1973, for which he was awarded the Critics’ Prize in Cannes), Parlons Grand-mère (1991) and Hyènes (1994, based on Dürrenmatt’s Der Besuch der alten Dame). At the beginning of the 1990s Mambéty opened a school in Dakar: the Foundation Yaadi Koone – Pour l'enfance et la nature. His final years were devoted to the project of the trilogy of stories, Stories of ordinary people/Histoires de petites gens, with Le Franc/Fate as the first part (1994) and La petite vendeuse de soleil/The Small Vendor of the Sun (1999) as the second short film, which he was largely able to complete shortly before his death.

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