HOW TO MAKE A MUD CAKE, 2021
Helena Uambembe continues her exploration of the Angolan Border War, this time from the perspective of women and children, with a recipe for a mud cake made with the children of Pomfret. At times playful and times quite weighty, this work explores narratives surrounding history, memory and place interweaving the tongue in cheek humour, ‘the soil in Pretoria has enough colonialism in it so it’s perfect’ with childlike innocence represented by playing with mud always in the shadow of the violence the machete promises. The combination of these symbols is Uambembe’s contemplation of putting a broken world. Uambembe’s placement of images and narratives within the contexts of Pretoria and Pomfret illuminates the act of representing the reality of Pomfret that challenges a specific version of the past and present within public discourse. The warnings and carefully worded instructions are an expression of the revolutionary potential of small acts of care. It is an exploration that in every tragedy, there is a possibility of redemption.