Freddy Sabimbona, Artistic Director of the theatre company Troupe Lampyre and Director of the festival, Buja Sans Tabou and Hadassa Ngamba a multidisciplinary artist received a scholarship from Africalia to train in Belgium.
Hadassa Ngamba studio HISK 2021, picture © Aziz Hazara
Freddy Sabimbona is Burundian. He obtained his European diploma in cultural project management from the Marcel Hicter Association in June 2021 in Delphi, Greece. Marcel Hicter is a permanent education association, recognized by the Wallonia-Brussels Federation, which aims to promote and raise awareness of cultural democracy in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation, in Europe and internationally, and to train cultural professionals in the management and administration of cultural projects. This one-year training course leads to an European diploma in cultural management.
However, Freddy Sambibona explains "in reality it is a year and a half. Because before we can be admitted to the European diploma, we have to present a project that fits within the framework of cooperation between partners, a relevant project with a social and cultural impact under the supervision of the Director of the Marcel Hicter Foundation, Jean Pierre Deru, in order to ensure that we submit a meaningful project”.
Freddy Sabimbona confided on this experience : “ The role of the European Diploma has been enormous for me on different levels because I questioned myself about my profession, my art and the way I conceived the art sector as a whole, both in Burundi and elsewhere. I will never be grateful enough for the meetings, discussions and visits that we made, which opened my eyes to many things, such as the importance of a country’s cultural policy, or the magnificent visit we made to Booksar in Croatia, which greatly influenced my work, both in terms of content and form.
Before the European diploma, I was an actor, director and festival manager but recently, having listened to and digested all that I have learned during this year, I am a fervent defender of culture as a whole and I do not intend to stop there. Thank you for this wonderful "Destabilization” "
Hadassa Ngamba, is the other artist from the continent who was given the opportunity to expand her skills in Belgium thanks to a scholarship from Africalia at HISK (Hoger Instituut voor Schone Kunsten) for two years in the city of Ghent. Originally from Congo, Hadassa describes herself as a visual artist. She holds a bachelor’s degree in criminology from the University of Lubumbashi and exhibited at WIELS in 2019 at the end of an artist residency and participated in the 5th and 6th edition of the Lubumbashi Biennale. Her work has been published in the New York Times dedicated to the 6th edition of the Lubumbashi Biennale.
About her experience at HISK : "I got to know HISK when I was in Belgium in 2019 during my residency at WIELS and during a conversation with Toma MUTEBA. I was very curious about it. I dared to apply to this programme especially because it is an inaccessible programme for us Africans because of the restrictions related to registration fees and the difficulties to obtain a visa among others. Despite this, I was supported by the institutions through which I was able to exhibit or do residencies in the past, which allowed me to start my residency programme at the beginning of 2020 as the first artist from sub-Saharan Africa and The Republic of Congo at HISK.
This research residency at HISK gave me time to reflect on my artistic practice and to develop a discourse about my work. The exchanges with the art professionals who came to share their experience and knowledge also nourished me a lot. An important detail for me in this course is also the possibility that my certificate obtained at HISK will offer me later on. Indeed, I will be able to teach anywhere in the world and therefore I will be able to transmit my acquired knowledge to my compatriots in Congo and everywhere else on the African continent".
Hadassa is preparing an exhibition “ Configurations” at the cultural center of Strombeek from 23 october to 15 december 2021