A project by Sonia Boyce
Filmed and edited by
Video double screen | 2 x 16:9 | 18 minutes
Fastnacht is a pre-Lent celebration like Mardi Gras or Carnival and is documented back to pre-Roman times. The masks and costumes of today date back to medieval times when they were not in place as fun decorations but as ways to avoid punishment and persecution as carnival goers would mock the strict rulers of the day. Had they not used masks to disguise themselves they would have been caught and death would have been inevitable. “Ho Narro!” This is the traditional greeting between dancing fools that kicks off the carnival in Konstance, Germany, a colourful, fun-packed event that celebrates traditions steeped in history.
Working with curator Axel Lapp, Sonia Boyce created a double screen observational video work that explores this strange and deeply tradional carnival.