Out of the closet

Discrimination is the ugly duck of our world. Suriname has not been saved anything on this issue. In this way, I am unfortunately concluding: if you really want to learn something, you should ask yourself, “Do I want to start with bureaucracy and hassle with authorities?” Because inequality is not yet out of the world.

Institutions also discriminate based on health. This does not only slow down development very well. It is especially frustrating. This is how I imagine: ‘You have a smart or talented child living with chronic condition.’ Even more concretely, take one of the youngsters of MISSION 21, who is born with HIV. That child wants to continue to develop its talent. ‘Such a person has no equal opportunities to study, based on agency.’ Sure not, if the state of health of this child is the only motive not to receive support for tuition. I think that this way of generalization is based on air. Are people still being deprived of opportunity this way today, only based on bullshit like these? To me it does not matter if this is policy of a development agency, a profit-based organization, or that a medical institution work is based on inequality. Discrimination, also on other differences than skin color or health status, is the biggest rotten apple in a society. Even more when it is hung up on such smelly air! Can we be even crazier? That is why I see initiatives like MISSION 21 as something to cherish. These should have a permanent character and should come from a budget, paid from the Surinamese tax payer. Even if the budget for art and culture would be well above SRD 17 million. Our education system can use impulses like these even better. It would be nice if these initiative were not based on forces from abroad. If only we could invest in vulnerable young people, to make them great for the future.

It does me good when I see parties who dare stimulate such concepts. To help develop talents together doesn’t harm anyone. Among the most vulnerable are also talents that are rotting away. Almost everyone knows that the production of ‘machines’ that don’t think independently, brings down the nation nowadays. My experience as a self made artist is essential to what I am, and can do personally. Who knows, maybe one day I will be equipped to go even further? In any case, I do not want to keep trying: mopping with the tap open. What a seed needs, especially in the dry season, is a lot of water. It seems good to me to continue with those whom want, to keep our trees of tomorrow watered. I am not perfect and therefore try to generalize little too, just by being able to make a little distinction myself. Like a borderline personality does not let it be framed, I take energy from what I see around me, and use it as a foundation to build. Therefore, I use the impulses that grow in me to play with criticism. Often my mouth is well gagged. I take a personal experience as an example. My art installation “Theo Masrakaba”, that has been dismantled by the deputy director of the Department of Culture, of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. This person personally phoned me 3 days before the celebration of 155 years of abolition of slavery, to participate in the exhibition “Spirits of the Ancestors”. However difficult to achieve, I wanted to reward her request, after I first kindly thanked for the invitation. Only, now I have evidence that she does not understand at all… Because her message was not: hold your mouth shut! To my surprise, that lady, who had the guts to drag my artwork away personally, used as argument that the work had too much influences of work from another artist. Coincidentally an artist that I really appreciate and admire. Kurt Nahar always throws up a lot of shit, which makes us all feel a true message in his art.

In the meantime, I have developed an elephant skin. Perhaps fatter than our government leaders. That is why I also had to perform in public on July 1st, 2018. It was not only a demonstration of the first parliamentarian who carries his own toilet bowl, it was especially playing a final game from my performance persona “Tumpi Flow”. My dear culture people, that too is art from home. Oh yes, when I occasionally set up a big mouth, and send everyone to their nut respectfully, I hope that one understands that I have become fed up with the frustration of our own mentality. Meanwhile, I know that diving in art keeps me from many miserable things. Fortunately, I have been blessed to be an artist within myself for more than a decade. And especially the drive not to give up when it comes to young people. So, I will continue until the next wind will blow again. Maybe that inequality in this world will be very good to me at that moment?