We wholly deny this to the mind and attribute it to the body. A dedication to Philosopher and Activist Anton Wilhelm Amo


Tracing forward while moving back: the enigma of existence is waving inside a bursting cycle. But what happens when the ellipse is marked by a human-made conscious ellipsis? What does become a life that has consciously been denied? And is there a difference between existing and living?

Can ideas revive, revive the being and the becoming ? SAVVYZΛΛR is waving within SAVVY Contemporary’s current exhibition, THE FACULTY OF SENSING – Thinking With, Through, and By Anton Wilhelm Amo.

Part 1: 

This first episode is focusing on Anton Wilhelm Amo, the philosopher. While tracing back the history of Germany’s movement of enlightenment that A. W. Amo influenced as a precursor. A reflection on the experience of a shipwreck, and the constant horizon of a new beginning in the daily quests of questions: there where waterwaves are vibrating, and ideas resonating.


The show’s artistic director Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung
Comments by the show’s curatorial support Kelly Krugman
The show’s following artists and references to their artworks:

Adama Delphine Fawundu. “Sunsum, in Spirit” (Film, 2020) / “Sunsum, in Body” (Haptic Canvas, 2020) / “Sunsum, in Mind #1 + Sunsum, in Mind #2 (Installation, 2020)

Adjani Okpu-Egbe. “Decolonising Knowledge (Anton Wilhelm Amo)” (Multimedia installation, 2020)

Jean-Ulrick Désert. “Guten Morgen Preußen” (6 cyanotypes on Bütten-Ingres paper, 2009)

Kitso Lynn Lelliott. “291 years condensed into the same number of seconds (or) one day out there our paths might cross” (Three-channel video installation, 2020)

With Quotes by Anton Wilhelm Amo, from the book "Anton Wilhelm Amo's Philosophical Dissertations on Mind and Body", edited and translated by Stephen Menn and Justin E. H. Smith (Oxford University Press Inc, 2020), as part of the multimedia research installation "Amo-in-himself" by the SAVVY. DOC

Quotes read by Lynhan Balatbat-Helbock, Kelly Krugman, Kamila Metwaly, and Arlette-Louise Ndakoze

Radio Edit: Arlette-Louise Ndakoze


One recurring question around Anton Wilhelm Amo’s vehement postulate of the impassible human mind is: did he relate it to his own biography? One could argue that A. W. Amo’s philosophy reads like a treatise for the untouchable dignity of human’s existence that holds a place in space, no matter what the living matter will become. A form of resistance against slavery and occupation. In other words: A. W. Amo’s thesis would be defending an existence that cannot be denied, not now nor ever. In this second episode, we rest upon Anton Wilhelm Amo’s living and reasoning almost 300 years ago, when he defended his disputation on Black people in Europe, “Disputatio De jure Maurorum in Europa (On the Right of Moors in Europe)”. Listen with us into SAVVY Contemporary’s  current exhibition, from the angle of Anton Wilhelm Amo’s ideas-actions, and their importance for today’s planetary decolonial movements. 


The show’s artistic director Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, 2020

A.W.Amo quotes read by Lynhan Balatbat-Helbock, Kelly Krugman, Kamila Metwaly, and Arlette-Louise Ndakoze, 2021

The show’s following artists and references to their artworks: Resolve Collective, Claudia Martínez Garay, Antje Majewski & Olivier Guesselé-Garai, Akinbode Akinbiyi

Radio Edit: Arlette-Louise Ndakoze