Born in 1985, Schwäbisch Hall, Germany.
Lives and works in Berlin.
I like to imagine hair as the last still active remnant of the thread that has woven the body into its form and shape, like the last threads on a carpet. It holds the essence and the history of its carrier in its purest and most fragile form as a living archive. In kandɪd, hair becomes a metaphor of the thread used for weaving. And weaving, in turn, becomes a metaphor for story-telling.
I learned how to create the different braids in my performance from Kurdish women. The Kurdish people believe the longer a woman’s hair, the stronger she is and the more powerful is her essence. This essence, found accumulated in hair, can be transmitted into the world as creative force. It may also be understood as an externalised view of the soul. In Kurdistan, the way hair is braided differs greatly from region to region, just like dialects. Every braiding style has its own historic, cultural and socio-mythological connotation. Mothers and grandmothers braid their daughter’s hair as an act to secure their inclusion into a cultural lineage with its own stories and knowledge: knowledge that has been stored in the bodies of women. I found that Kurdish women freedom fighters would, in many instances, braid their hair in the most elaborate and complex fashions. This braided hair seems separate from the fighters’ own bodies, yet is also part of them – with a conscience of its own. On a meta-level the hair might also signify the collective body or soul of the Kurdish people, their cultural memory, their culture and struggle. At the same time, it connects the women fighters in solidarity (the braids look like paths that are slung together but are autonomous as the fighters braid their hair for each other, each taking the role of mother and daughter) to create a communal feeling of bonding and belonging. Such weaving may even represent a more liberated understanding of individual existence.