Studios Kabako Network Partner

The Studios Kabako // Kisangani Founded in 2001 in Kinshasa by Congolese artist and 2007 Prince Claus Laureate Faustin Linyekula, the Studios Kabako was conceived as a space for dance and physical theatre, a mental space above all, to create, dialogue, exchange. In 2006, the Studios Kabako relocated to Kisangani, the third largest city in the country with about 900.000 inhabitants, capital of the Province orientale, newly reintegrated to the national territory after several years of occupation and heavy conflicts. Conversations with local artists and cruel lack of cultural infrastructures in the city led the Studios Kabako into exploring new fields including music, film and video. This move also led to the need to turn the mental space into a physical one, to confront an artistic journey to an urban territory. A fruitful dialogue with German architect Bärbel Müller led to the design of three art spaces, as opposed to a central monolithic one, located in different parts of the city, including periphery and generating circulation of ideas, people, energies between them and across the urban body. To realize this urban settling, the Studios Kabako acquired two pieces of land. The first one, located 7 kilometres from the city centre, will host a residency and lab centre. Groundbreaking works have been completed in September 2010. 

The second piece of land, located in the city centre, is intended to be a showing venue for dance, theatre, music and film. In the meantime and since 2009, the Studios Kabako have been renting a vast house in the city centre that includes a professional recording studio (the only one in the Eastern part of the country), a rehearsal space for music, an outdoor stage for dance and theatre, administrative and technical spaces. Besides being home for Faustin Linyekula’s artistic explorations, the Studios Kabako support storymakers working with various media (sounds, images, movements, spaces, words) to question local contexts and establish bridges with the world beyond. 

The organization 

• Proposes on-going training, workshops, internships, mentoring sessions…, taking place in Kisangani or in Congo, but also abroad as part of partnerships with various organizations. It aims at improving artistic but also technical and administrative skills, in a deeply-professional prospect 

• Provides financial, technical and administrative support to creation process 

• Tours accompanied works, locally but also internationally.

Film: Virginie Dupray on Studios Kabako