IMAGI-NATION NWAR – a PASS session in Paris, 5-9 May 2021

imagi-nation nwar – a PASS broadcast from Paris, 5-9 May 2021

Lavoir Moderne Parisien (35 rue Leon, Goutte d’or)

From 2pm daily. Listen at

Presented by Chimurenga with: Blaise N’Djehoya; Marie-Julie Chalu; DY Ngoy; Yebga Likoba; Cheikh Tidiane Fall; Fabienne et Véronique Kanor; Hamedine Kane; Elom 20ce; Brice Ahounou; Wasis Diop; Roger Raspail; Pascale Obolo; Julius-Amedee Laou; Jean-Jacques Dufayet; Maboula Soumahoro; Elsie Haas; Amandine Nana; Franck Biyong; Hemle Boum; Christian Nyampeta; Christelle Oyiri; Célia Potiron; Anna Tje; Annouchka de Andrade; Tommie McKenzie; R22 tout-monde and many more.


From 5-9 May 2021, Chimurenga’s Pan African Space Station (PASS) will land at Lavoir Moderne Parisien in Goutte d’or, Paris, to imagine, re-examine and re-circulate sonic archives of black radicalism in the francophone world. This session will dig into the “soundtrack” (bande-son), an underlying container of information and ideas that seldom gets explored on own terms.

We depart from cinematic practice, specifically films/filmmakers (Julius-Amedee Laou, Elsie Haas, Med Hondo, Kanor sisters, Sarah Maldoror, etc) represented in the printed archive we recently installed in Centre Pompidou, and expand the soundtrack beyond the screen to other areas of knowledge production: the street, the club, recording studios, kongossa, live performances, noise, even the magazine page.

We imagine a live in-studio soundtrack that responds to and expands visual footage from the 2nd Congress of Black Writers and Artists in Rome 1959 – an event charged by the-then process of decolonisation and the unwelcome presence of younger, radical thinkers such as Fanon, Beti, Glissant, Beville and more. We take the cues from Fabienne and Véronique Kanor’s “La noiraude” to explore zouk as aesthetics of black transnationalism – a geography of unauthorised pleasure throughout the 1980s. We listen to Sarah Maldoror’s records collection and her use of music on film.

In Julius-Amedee Laou’s “Solitaire a micro ouvert”, the brother of a man killed in a racist murder in Paris of the 1980s takes over of a black radio station to address the “community”. In “La Vieille Quimboiseuse et le majordome” he highlights the dialectic between the seen and the heard. We listen to the oral history of “La coordination des femmes noires” that writer Gerty Dambury continually produces; or Gerard Lockel’s development of gro ka moden as decolonial praxis; or the Paris-based afro/astrosonic network documented in the music Jo Maka, Ramadolf, Cheikh Tidiane Fall, Yebga Likoba and more, which not only connects directly to Maldoror’s film “Un dessert pour Constance” but also puts sound to the immigrant struggles of the post-May 68 era. And brings us to the ongoing gentrification and structural violence in Goutte d’or.

We consider Frank Biyong’s retelling of the war of decolonisation in Cameroun in his album “Ibolo Ini”, and more broadly his use of music as site of memorialising; and explore black ecologies through sound.

We present “Act 2” of Christian Nyampeta’s acclaimed radio-play “The Africans”.

And live performances, talks, screenings, DJ sets. And more.

Lets listen together.


Produced in collaboration with, and the support of Saison Africa2020 and Lavoir Moderne Parisien.



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