Seawater to wash the borders, salt in the wounds

24/01/2019 — 31/01/2019

Rituals for dis-identification

The Many Headed Hydra: Imagination, Speculation, Dissolution of Space and Time Magazine #03, Colombo 2019
Zine and ritual cards by Emma Haugh, Katusa Medusa, Sandev Handy, Suza Husse, Vicky Shajahan & A Collective for Feminist Conversations made on the occasion of Sea Change, Colomboscope Festival, 24-31 January 2019, curated by Natasha Ginwala.


Draupadi was married off to the Pancha Pandavas; it is claimed she loved all five of them. Did her polyamory queer the institu- tion of marriage? Does queerness remain queer if it only serves to further leverage patriarchal institutions such as the “dignity” and “honour” of upper-caste men? Where do the erased go? Do they lurk as shadows within the folds of our entrails? Across the Palk Strait and many generations, Draupadi is remembered and propitiated to negate infertility and malaria. Her polyamory no longer celebrated, becoming a footnote; lost in the tectonic shift of the topography of memory. 


I feel perfectly free to rebel and rail against my culture. I fear no betrayal on my part. I find my nature buried under the personal- ity that had been imposed. The mundane smoothens the edges of the injury. Push the unacceptable out from the shadows. Be tender with it. Be tender with yourself. Connect to all forms of treason. Dis-identify with yourself. Dis-identify with borders. The spaces between different worlds. Let them blend with the sea, together and loose and in constant connection.  


Seawater to wash the borders, salt in the wounds: Rituals for dis-identification contains materials that were generated in conversations, collage making and fabulation from 18 to 24 January 2019 at the Women in Media Collective Colombo, in the garden of the Goethe Institut Sri Lanka, and in Slave Island – at walks through the neighbourhood and to its Ocean shore, at the rooftop of the former RIO Hotel where the hydra installation came to be.

Thanks to Natasha Ginwala, Shanika Perera, Sophia and Isabella Sansoni, Puja Srivastava, Jan Ramesh de Saram, Subha Wijesiriwardena, Thilini Perera, Ruwangi Amarasinghe & all the people participating in the collage and conversation making organized by A Collective for Feminist Conversations at the Women in Media Collective on 18 January 2019.

Supported by the Goethe Institute Sri Lanka. Published by DISTRICT Berlin