World Cup comes to Germany

This was a huge effort from every direction. It was a great effort none the less to have done. An action, a lecture, a sculpture-installation etc.

I hadn't known much about soccer before this project but grew to really like the game and ignore it's deficits. Sometimes the museums lobby was too full with enthusiastic participants and it was good that i had been set up with several assistants for the project.

The lecture was given in a large hall in a park where the Münchners isolate their night-clubs. I took the time to put together a series of video excerpts on hooliganism in the game and the international nature of the madness of fan-culture from Africa to Asia to Europe, each with their own small details.

Soccer is very popular all over the world and there is no exception with German soccer 
Take a note of my photo of German soccer fans and their fetishized costumes that have served as a guide for this project of erasure.

I made it a point to mention during the presentation, various types of "erasure", not only my own artistic gesture, but that of erasing such historical figures such as the football/soccer-player Justin Fashanu who committed suicide in the aftermath of coming out as a gay person.

The way in which history is discussed reveals various tonalities of national and international politics and the dynamics of one group against another. Tribalism can easily emerge or be reinforced. Take for exampel the manner in which in 1974 the World Soccer match between ITALY and HAITI (my birthplace) is discussed- "What The Guardian said: Hugh McIlvanney, 16 June 1974: 
The Footballers of Haiti, who came from the Caribbean for this World Cup knowing that at best they would be patronised, at worst dismissed as imposters, gave the competition one of its genuinely electric moments here tonight when they took the lead against Italy – by beating Dino Zoff, a goalkeeper who had not conceded a goal in an international match since September 1972. Emmanuel Sanon, a powerfully built and spiritedly aggressive black forward from Port-au-Prince, did what some of the greatest players in the world had failed to do in Zoff's 12 previous games for Italy.

Sanon thus goes straight into the folklore of his country along with Francillon, a goalkeeper of supernatural brilliance on the night, and Vorbe, the one white man in the Haitian team and the source of the magnificent pass that made Sanon's goal and of much else that was excellent. Italy moved Facchetti inside to smother the dangerous Sanon, tired out Vorbe and his helpers and finally broke down Francillon's resistance. So Haiti lost clearly enough in the end but anyone who calls them imposters from now had better have the decency to blush.

There is nothing like an inspired goalkeeper for winning the affections of a neutral crowd and Francillon, dark, handsome and theatrically defiant, had turned the German spectators into fervent supporters of Haiti long before the first half was over. Even the Italians, who had started to assemble with their red-white-and-green flags and their horns before breakfast, intent on spending the whole sunless day in delicious anticipation of a slaughter, were reduced to a muted buzz of respect as Francillon reached shot after shot, header after header. Sometimes he hurled himself about his goal with an almost frenzied agility, happy to make violent contact with the ball and beat it coarsely away from his line. In other moments, and more frequently as his confidence was fed by his own successes, he leapt gracefully to make solid, clutching saves. Mazzola and Riva and Chinaglia shook their heads and threw their arms wide in exasperation as the minutes oozed away and Haiti refused to surrender." Click here for the SOURCE

The soccer field as a stage/platform for complex issues of human dignity, prejudices, hegemony and empire have a long history in support or against foreign bodies *(including players or fans of the LGBT communities).