Giovanni Abath’s new street art in Otrobanda.
In the run-up to the popular Kaya Kaya street party in Otrobanda, the festive unveiling of two works by Giovanni Abath took place on Thursday evening, August 25, 2022.
The last edition of the street party was in December 2019 and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, for two years it was not possible to organize such a mass event. Instead, urban gardens were established in 2020 to grow food for the neighborhood. On Saturday, August 27, 2022, Kaya Kaya was back; this time it was called the ‘Kurá Edition’. As with previous editions, collaboration was sought with street artists to give a new look to the neighborhood where the event was held.
Giovanni Abath was one of the participating artists and he was requested to realize something at two locations, Frederikstraat and Hendriksteeg. Against a blind wall on Frederikstraat, he made a monumental metal work titled Konosé bo mes i lo bo konosé Universo (Know yourself and you will know the universe). In Hendriksteeg he made a pergola which he titled Flowers of the Sky.
For a previous edition of Kaya Kaya, Giovanni created the work Emancipate yourself from mental slavery, near Emmastraat. With this new work in Frederikstraat, he elaborated further on the theme. Giovanni explained that after emancipation, people also had to mentally free themselves from slavery. For the process of mental liberation, man must work on self-knowledge. The new artwork incorporates various symbols associated with self-knowledge. In addition to symbols for the four elements, water, fire, earth, and air, of which the human body is made, Giovanni added a symbol for the fifth element, love. This is the flower shape behind the standing figure. Giovanni pointed out that love leads to self-knowledge and vice-versa. The title of the work is taken from an inscription in the temple of Apollo at Delphi (Greece), Gnothi seauton, Know thyself.
The ceremony took place in the presence of the public, including OWCS Minister Sithree van Heydoorn, VVRP Minister Charles Cooper, and sponsor Maduro and Curiel’s Bank. The master of ceremonies for the evening was Nifa Ansano. Giovanni thanked his sponsor and the Kaya Kaya organization for the opportunity and their trust.
The unveiling itself was done by the energetic dance group FAK. After this, Giovanni Abath explained the work. Giovanni concluded by thanking his team members Najib, Bandabou, Eddine, Carolina, and his wife Angelica.
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