I’m painting in Ongojou on the island of Maoré (Mayotte) off the East Coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean.
I’m painting with the help of local youth, words that have been chosen by the youth themselves. The kids have been learning traditional tales of their community and finding words to represent these tales. Here I wrote the word “maji” (water in Shimaoré) on one of the walls surrounding the well which provides water for the village. They call the well “chissimani” and the tale says that a princess fought the evil spirits around the well and turned into a beautifull tree which guards the well untill this day. This vital well is what enabled the village to develop since it was the only source of freshwater in the area.
It is such a lively and inspiring place to paint in with so many people turning up to wash clothes, dishes or their own bodies. The clothes and the plastic tubs make the place extremely colourful !