Dresden (DE)


Paying a Visit to the Queen–Tracing Dispersion, Looking for Disappearance

Andrea Bellu & Matei Bellu

In 1897, during a colonial conflict with the Kingdom of Benin–in present-day Nigeria–, British soldiers burnt down the palace of the king and looted more than 2,500 bronze and ivory artefacts. In 1901, only four years after the looting of the Benin palace, most of the Benin artefacts were already part of museum collections in Europe. Almost half of them were brought to museums in Germany.

The video accompanies the art historian and artist Peju Layiwola and the historian Memory Biwa during a visit to the collection of the bronzes of the Ethnological Museum in Berlin. It is their second visit on the same day, immediately following a tour with the two curators of the museum’s African collection.

Video von Andrea Bellu und Matei Bellu (2016, 10min)