LB°24 Participants

Hiwa K

Hiwa K (b. in Sulaymaniyah, 1975) is an artist based in Berlin.

“The last time I saw my mother to say good- bye, I said that now I am leaving for good, and we might never see each other again.” In the film Pre Image (Blind as the Mother Tongue), the artist Hiwa K traces his own flight through Europe, from Başur in Kurdistan, across the Turkish border, the Greek mountains, and from there onto the sea. By re-walking this route (an archeological method for countering amnesia), long lost memories come back. His journey took place mostly at night, and from the ship’s cargo hold he remembers the darkness that made him blind, “blind as the mother tongue.” When his sense of time becomes distorted, his stomach is his only clock. This story of migration is given shape through the senses, seeing and hearing and their absence. Hiwa K made a sculpture out of variously angled mirrors, which he carries on his head throughout the film. This strange object functions like an extension of the body and its senses. In the mirrors the artist sees his own reflection, just as he sees the reflection of the spaces he traverses: green meadows, tarmac roads, viaducts and a refugee camp in the port of Athens. While the people passing by watch the precarious balancing act, careful to step out of the way to make space, the artist just continues walking, and never stops.

Hiwa K (b. in Sulaymaniyah, 1975) is an artist based in Berlin.

Thanks to gallery KOW Berlin.

Pre-image (Blind as the Mother Tongue), 2017, Hiwa K. Luleåbiennalen 2018.


Pre-image (Blind as the Mother Tongue), 2017


Ájtte - Swedish Mountain- and Sami Museum, Jokkmokk