In the frame of the Memwar Kreyol festival, I organized a cartographic workshop based on my work on colonial routes of tropical spices.

This festival organised by Anagram presented the first event dedicated to Creole cultures in Brussels from April 12 to 21 at Volta XL. In the European crossroads that is Brussels, Memwa Kréyòl addressed notions such as migration, Creolity, the preservation of ecosystems, knowledge and identity. By questioning the place of medicinal plants in Creole cultural heritage, the different artistic interventions showed how nature is a resilient example through language, through gesture and through the senses, awakening our collective memory in the fight against ecological and generational amnesia.

“Cartographies of spices” was a moment where we played with our collective memory of spices, questioning each participant’s knowledge and understanding of spice plants, provoking an engaging melting pot of sensorial memories. I then guided them through the colonial routes that spices used to cross for centuries, challenging the faded memories from school years and pointing out the design innovations that marked history along the way. The participative setting of the workshop engaged everyone in tracing their own routes and memories of spices on the map, a humbling experience for all.