VIP - VideoChannel Interview Project

Ekouagou, Kokou

Kokou Ekouagou
Visual Artist from Togo


Interview – 10 questions

1. Tell me something about your life and the educational background
I work and live in Lome (Togo). I’m an artist using painting, sculpture, photography, video, performance and installation with a background in Mathematics and Physics. I’m graduated from the University of Lome and I also studied Cultural Management at Goethe-Institut.
By developping strategies based on multicultural principles, identity and affect, I suggest critical approaches to dominant historical narratives and attempt to decentralise them. My current research projects are propelled by a desire to reflect on the classifications and constructs of everyday reality.

2. When, how and why started you filming?
I started filming in 2007 out of curiosity when I was in Shanghai, but my real curiosity was heightened in Lomé when I filmed a market scene that I titled “MARKET ZONE”. I often do it spontaneously as always in inspiring action. I want the viewer of my videos to make a radical change in perception, from a classical point of view, so that art is no longer simply a passive vision but a mode of operation that participates in the growing intersection of people around the world in peace.

3. What kind of subjects have your videos/films?
My videos revolve around themes such as peace, the position of women in society, multiculturalism, and the destiny of Africa.

4. How do you develop your videos/films, do you follow certain principles, styles etc?
I develop my video in a fixative free spirit according to my state of mind.

5. Tell me something about the technical equipment you use.
I use camera and smartphone which can give good image resolution.

6. What are the chances of new media for the genre videos/films in general and you personally?
Basically, the new media allow us to communicate quickly to reach the target for a free and solid democratization. This allows a sprawling information that reinforces diverse opinions and behaviors. I personally think that being a committed artist allows me to be in better contact with the public everywhere through new media works.

7. How do you finance your films?
I finance my films myself.

8. Do you work individually as a video artist/film maker or do you work in a team? if you have experience in both, what is the difference, what do you prefer?
I work individually as a video artist/film maker. Of course I would like to work in a team if the opportunity arises to take advantage of the complementarity of ideas for a more successful experience.

9. Who or what has a lasting influence on your film/video making?
Artists are influenced by just about anything – their life, identity, environment, childhood, school, work, television, movies, other artists, etc. I think everything we see and experience in life influences our art in some way, whether directly or indirectly. Mostly it’s my mood, state of mind, ability and where my heart is at that moment in time. But of course there needs to be a source of inspiration or what is there?

10. What are your future plans or dreams as a film/video maker?
As a film/video maker, I plan to open a space of contemporary art in a near future to teach street children by exchanging ideas on the challenges facing new technologies and behaviors in the sense of a universal mixing.