Kunstmuseum aan zee Collecties van
de Vlaamse Gemeenschap
Stad Oostende


Wendy Morris - This, of course, is a work of the imagination

One hundred years ago, in 1917, the SS Mendi sails through the English Channel towards France. On board is a battalion of South African labour troops. There is a collision and the ship sinks. No assistance is offered and more than 600 men drown. Memory of the disaster fades in the turmoil of the Great War.

In the exhibition the story of the SS Mendi is used as a “pars pro toto”. It stands for a larger story that leads the viewer towards the complex history of South African segregation, a story that touches not only on colonial Western attitudes towards Africa but also on black South African attitudes towards the First World War. Wendy Morris looks back in an exhibition in which animated film, video, poetry and spoken word explore the boundaries of past and present, myth and reality. The century-old shipping drama is no longer part of the landscape. Imagination offers solace. This, of course, is a work of the imagination.

Overview past exhibitions »

09/09/2017 - 07/01/2018