Dancing for resilience is a powerful community building endeavor. Especially when addressing an issue as triggering as the rape culture connected to the electronic industries, LowTide label and I wanted to host an event that would uplift the audience, not overwhelm them while supporting Ibutwa. People coming together to learn more about conflict minerals out of respect for vulnerable families in the DRC set the stage for an intimate evening of learning and expressing a wide range of emotions. Sound moves energy which is why we continuously sent intentions for healing to the DRC throughout the night.
With the numerous local artists who volunteered to play at the event and who were also born but forced to leave the DRC due to the unstable conditions, so much love was sent by the group for healing in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Seeing how connected we all are to Africa and our electronic devices in general, inviting people to join the conflict free movement unfolded naturally. As more people learned about the harsh realities in the DRC, the invitation to participants was extended to take this issue into their own hands.
Before entering the space, we posted multiple cardboard boxes on the walls as canvases for supporters of the conflict free society movement to leave their mark. One panel said, “what does consent mean to you?”, followed by, “what does rebirth mean to you?”, alongside two blank boxes for people to freely express themselves as a contribution to the renaissance. Ibutwa translates to rebirth and renaissance in Lega, which is why we asked the audience to consider those two questions before entering the event. Addressing rape culture is intense, as many people are triggered when addressing conversations about this kind of physical and psychological abuse. Knowing this, we wanted to create a safe environment that had artistic supplies available, as we believe that art therapy is a powerful way to transmute negative emotions that surface when contemplating the crisis in DR Congo.
By getting together for a special night of solidarity, creativity and raising awareness about the conflict free movement, LowTide label was able to make a donation of around $300 from the $5 cover charges at the door. It was truly amazing that multiple artists volunteered to perform as contributions to the modern day renaissance.