Mbongui Square Festival is thrilled to present the 2019 workshop series. For this year, the festival offers dance and poetry workshops by the amazing Roshonda Parker, Uzo Nwankpa, Luc Ibata, Afia Thompson, Byb Bibene and Darius Simpson.

                                                Nkisi Nkondi-Sacred Kongo Sculptures

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Byb Kongo Bibene presents Nkisi Nkondi: A Divine Sculpture from Central Africa, a public talk which reveals the not so told functions of the minkisi minkondi, the sacred statues found in the great kingdom of Kongo, central Africa. The minkisi were power figures used by individuals, families, or whole communities to destroy or weaken evil spirits, prevent or cure illnesses, repel bad deeds, solemnize contracts or oath taking, and resolve disputes. A diviner or holy person would activate the statue, using magical substances. In this presentation, Bibene draws a portrait of Central Africa before and after colonization, with social, political, and religious implications. He also mentions the intersectionality between the Kongo Cosmology via the Kongo cosmogram called Dikenga Kia Nza Kongo and the bodily movement in the life cycles. The talk precedes a demonstration of the state of the body while in communion with the physical and metaphysical worlds.