Frédéric Bruly Bouabré (1923-2014).
Frédéric Bruly Bouabré, was born in 1923 in Zéprégüé, Côte d’Ivoire.
The origin of all of Frédéric Bruly Bouabré ’s work stems from a revelatory experience: on March 11, 1948, “the heavens opened up before my eyes and seven colorful suns described a circle of beauty around their Mother-Sun, I became Cheik Nadro: ‘He who does not forget.’' From then on Bruly Bouabré tackled every field of knowledge and collected his research in manuscripts about arts and traditions, poetry, tales, religion, esthetics, and philosophy, revealing himself to be an astonishing thinker, poet, encyclopedist, creator. Searching for a way to preserve and transmit the knowledge of the Bété people, as well as the knowledge of the entire world, he invented an alphabet of 448 monosyllabic pictograms to represent phonetic syllables. This endeavor earned Bouabré the legendary reputation of being another Champollion, in reference to the great scholar and linguist Jean-Paul Champollion (1790-1832), who discovered the key to understanding Egyptian hieroglyphs. Bouabré’s alphabet, which can transcribe all human sounds, reflects the essence of his thought: to achieve universality and to unite mankind.
Frédéric Bruly Bouabré at his studioIn the 1970s, Bouabré started to transfer his thoughts to hundreds of small drawings in postcard format, using a ballpoint pen and colour crayons. These drawings, gathered under the title of Connaissance du Monde (World Knowledge), form an encyclopedia of universal knowledge and experience.
Other projects, such as Readings from Signs Observed in Oranges (1988), serve as visionary records of divination.
About my last night in Austria.
One of the rare cloud free nights - one of the coldest too, where my bare hands sent me back to the childhood memories of scraping ice from the freezer to play with
Zinken, 1854 was the first mountain I hiked up to when arriving in my estranged motherland, dwelving in some forgotten roots out here, I was once again the stranger in a motherland .
My bedroom window looked over it.
It was a natural thing to do. Walk the land and the mountains to sense the place. Up Zinken I could have a look on the whole valley and both Lakes, and even the house.
A mountain or a lake, a place in nature doesnt require me to speak a specific vocal language, it gives itself freely , it only requires me to tune to a frequency, and dialogue with the nature its stones, weather, water, dangers and other earthy vocabularies, and where i am responsible for each step I take. Where I come from takes a different meaning, a geographical one and a life path.
Humans have come to shape the landscape and think of it as mere backdrop tp serve their needs and stage their act. Yet I think there is more a landscape can tell about its inhabitant .
Interestingly my mother who grew up here never hiked up it, or the many others I went up to.
She had never been allowed to go roam on her own.
Yet my life has always been about going to places, new and foreign, tame and wild, on my own, real and imaginary, where the curiosity towards the strange and otherness was a fuel. It may well be because I was always the other and the strange, at home and at school, in homeland and otherland. It doesnt matter really, to feel foreign and belonging, having an ability feel a connection and disconnection anywhere, it is freedom after all. The question where are you from becomes an increasingly foreign concept
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