Turning the lens on one’s self was a pivotal gesture in the practice of Hélène Amouzou and Yun-tien Chu. Having left Togo and Taiwan respectively, both bear witness to a migratory journey to Europe which led them to reshape their identities, far from close circles and in unfamiliar environments. Their artistic practice was central to this pursuit, in particular through their work on the body as a means of asserting identity in a particular social context.
In her black and white photographs, Hélène Amouzou develops an essentialist approach in the staging of her body. In a series set in the attic of her house in Molenbeek, she claims her new environment, posing nude or with symbolic objects. Her aesthetic use of blurs and traces reflects the uncertainty of her situation. While Amouzou’s work recalls the fears experienced by many migrant women, her perspective is personal and introspective.
This autobiographical element is present in Yun-tien Chu’s videos too. On the question « Where is Home? » she talks about the difficulty of knowing where she is tied to – here or there – of keeping in touch with her family back home. However, Chu also interviews Taiwanese women living in Brussels. Her documentary approach features stories of migration and highlights the complex administrative procedures they entail.
Hélène Amouzou and Yun-tien Chu have found a way to examine the roots of their Identities in Motion.