Client: acte™/Highsnobeity/KÖNIG GALERIE

Brief: In 2020, Berlin-based creative studio acte™ approached me regarding a guerilla campaign they wanted to run in protest of the approaching opening of the Humboldt Forum and the museum's collection of works looted and acquired during colonial times. Amongst these works, the most contentious are the Benin Bronzes. The studio wanted me to created engaging copy to challenge the museum's right to own and display such works in the midst of debates and requests for the works to be returned. We decided to produce a film and I was commissioned to write the script.

The debate around the repatriation of assets is often academic, political and highly charged. However, for those whose works have been taken, it is decidedly an emotional issue. I wanted the campaign to reflect the sense of loss and chose to explore this through the universal idea of the mother. By brutalising the image of the mother, I hoped to introduce a disturbing image of violence and vulnerability that would feel personal, urgent, and disconcerting. Essentially, the script was an emotive call to action. Alongside the film, acte™ produced posters that were placed all over central Berlin on the weekend of the museum's opening in 2021.

The initial campaign was supported by Highsnobeity, including an interview on the film here. Further on, the campaign got the attention of KÖNIG GALERIE and the curators decided to project the film unto the side fo the building with subtitles in support of the protest.