a virtual exhibit of work by the 2020 MDOCS Storytellers’ Institute Fellows
NENE (Work in Progress)
Directed, Produced and Animated by Kadijatou Diallo
Narrated by Salamata Sow
Told through fabric and clay, this is the untold story of Salamata Sow’s life under Guinean President, Sékou Touré’s, regime. A state of grand political promises and crushing failure. The year is 1958. Salamata Sow is an optimistic young mother and newly-wed, whose country just gained its independence from France. Everything seems perfect, until it’s not. Without French financial support, the economy slowly crumbles. The new president, Sékou Touré, a popular young local labor activist turns paranoid and violent, killing at least 50,000 people and imprisoning countless others. Narrated by a modern-day Salamata, this film recreates her memories as her promising world transforms into a nightmare. From feigning support for the president at mandatory greeting parades to hearing her neighbors be captured in random night-raids. Salamata is hardened by the harsh realities of living under a militant socialist state. Due to media censorship, Salamata’s story and many others remain undocumented and unrecognized by the Guinean government, even today. This film attempts to recognize, confront, and hopefully heal. The piece will weave in and out of moments from 1958 to 1980, recreating snapshots of Salamata’s memory by layering the ‘traditional’ medium of stop-motion with ‘ new’ digital imagery software.
graduated from Skidmore this Spring. She is a filmmaker interested in the role of storytelling within social justice work. She spent her entire junior year studying abroad and conducting field research across six cities. While studying at the University of the Arts London, she assisted on a number of post-graduate narrative shorts, along with directing two of her own, Invisible and On the Surface. Her most recent work is a short documentary film, Sanctuary, she created with Khenya Makena. Sanctuary follows a conversation between activists, artists, and community organizers in the greater NYC and LA areas; who are involved with the physical spaces that queer people gather and the mental space one uses to heal.