Born Allada (BJ), 1988
Beeld 1 / 3 'Impossible Is Nothing (A – TK 2016 – Level 0)', 2014-2016, Allada (Benin) – Amsterdam (Netherlands), 200x200 cm
In his work Impossible Is Nothing Thierry Oussou explores archeological methodology in order to make a contemporary art work. Working with archeology and history students in Allada, Benin, he excavated a reproduction of a throne belonging to king Béhanzin. The monarch died in 1906 fighting the colonization of Benin. The original throne was then taken to France.
Oussou breathes new life into this piece of heritage by asking questions about authenticity, history and visibility. He reflects on the relationship between contemporary art and ethnographic objects in museums, and poses questions about who owns the throne and where should it be displayed. Oussou uses everyday objects in his work. He is interested in the transformation of these objects – a chair becoming a king’s throne, a symbol of power – through historical, political and social contexts. (AM)