RijksakademieOPEN 2015
Image 1 / 3   'The Poetry', 2015, sculpture, wood and plastic, dimensions variable
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Thierry Oussou prefers paper over canvas. Canvas is stern and rigid. Paper is more humble, the most basic carrier of images, of messages. Moreover, it can be torn, pasted together with other pieces of paper, and thus grow almost indefinitely. That makes paper very suitable for Oussou’s work. Oussou is like a social archeologist, observing the people around him, digging into their motivations and documenting their interaction. The composition of paper scraps indicates layers of history separating his protagonists, isolation because of social or economic station, the breakdown of communication, and the constant struggle between ego and community.

During RijksakademieOPEN 2015 Oussou shows a new installation. The starting point is an oral history recorded on a cassette tape. The story is narrated by a traditional singer in Fon, the language of the region of Allada, Benin. It dates back to the 13th century and tells about the royal family’s history, which is Oussou’s history as well as that of historical figures like François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture. It’s a story of migration, love, war, a search for power – topics that still dominate the world. By making a first official translation into English and French Oussou makes this oral history accessible in order to discuss its contemporaneity and universality.
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'Together', 2014, installation, dimensions variable 'Together', 2014, installation, dimensions variable
Together is a call for unity. We are all different each from each other. We all have our egos. But it is only by accepting the other, while putting the rating of egos that we can form the unit.
 
'My Poetry', 2013, French Institute of Cotonou, installation, wood drawing, poetry and radio, 7 x 4.5 m 'My Poetry', 2013, French Institute of Cotonou, installation, wood drawing, poetry and radio, 7 x 4.5 m
We trample the grass, we break the woods, we tear the papers. By doing all this we have a sound, what we are not careful. It's poetry. In this installation I summon the men that sum to pay attention to her that produce the things that surrounds us, we touch and we trample. Its sounds are for me poems.
 
'The other way', 2012, Unik place of contemporary creations Abomey, installation of 15,000 paper mask hardened and sculpt with fire, 4 x 4 x 4 m 'The other way', 2012, Unik place of contemporary creations Abomey, installation of 15,000 paper mask hardened and sculpt with fire, 4 x 4 x 4 m
I was inspired by our Vodou temples for this installation. To enter setup we must bow as one bows to enter the temples of Vodou. With this installation I express I made that art is sacred.