Katiana Weems-Ado 

Like Air, Like Dust : i've gone birdwatching,
| 2023

an essay film by KWeemsAdo
found footage, digital

Colonizer or colonized?

The work asks viewers to consider and question the Ring Necked Parakeet’s history and mythology in relation to Black & Brown pain & resilience. ‘Taken’ and ‘migratory’ states of being are investigated in relation to exoticism and (eco) xenophobia. It explores, primarily, what I have images for but lack the words to articulate. 


It is often speculated that the birds first appeared after escaping from the set of "The African Queen" (1952). 
An additional myth states a pair of the birds were released in the 1960s by Jimi Hendrix in Carnaby Street.
Perhaps the most widely believed is that the birds were kept as pets and through a series of escapes and releases gradually ended up populating the city. 

Originally only spotted in South London, these birds can now be seen all over greater London, and several other European cities. 

"Like Air, Like Dust : i've gone birdwatching," is an open question, an answer, a note to self. 


The Hangar Gallery, Royal College of Arts
December 11th - 15th, 2023
Battersea, UK

© 2024