A rough, 14-minute collage, developed in December 2020. It begins with the council chamber of the city of Johannesburg, and ends with scenes from the Constitutional Court. The score is based on recordings from council meetings addressing corruption in the government's pandemic response, and the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department's brass band. Intercut are filmed clips and sourced footage that juxtapose manifestations and contestations of statecraft, including police raids, protests and public hearings for the amendment of Section 25 of the Constitution – in which community members argue for redistribution of land without compensation. Our interest was in looking at the actual, sonic and symbolic presence of the house – its administrative, biopolitical, representational presence – as well as the urgent, exhaustive, and exhausting demands brought against it at a time of compounding crisis. Statecraft has appeared mercurial, yet intact. The last line of the video refers to a literal translation of the Sepedi proverb, mosadi o tshwara thipa ka bogaleng: a woman holds a knife by its blade. It points to the figure of the house as home and body, to the question of who bears protection, privilege and sacrifice in the curricular dissonance between private and public spheres.
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