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Ritual storytelling for decolonising ancient narratives

We find the myth of the wrestling match between Anteus (Ante) the giant and the Greek hero Heracles at the meeting point of the Amazigh and the Hellenic cultures, back in the days of the Greek expansion into Western Africa in the 5th century BC. It came to represent the Hellenic colonisation of ‘Lybia’/North Africa in Greek as well as Amazigh mythology.


Heracles takes away the power of Ante by separating him from the ground, knowing that Ante's mother, Gaia is the source of his potent life-force. We find at the base of every colonial endeavour, a process of intentionally separating people from the land, from their source of belonging and power. 


This installation and ritual performance for decolonising ancient narratives seeks to re-code the myth, reconnecting the giant again with a maternal underground, magnetic, serpentine energy. As we open our minds to occult topographies of M’zora stone circle, we may imagine the being of Ante as the surface expression of the earth’s underground lithic consciousness. We tell his story backwards, weaving in other mythical characters from the area who give their assistance in pulling the giant back down to touch his mother's body. 



... Legend has it that Anteus stood at a towering height of thirty meters, a giant. A true titan in stature.

Folklore whispers that his lineage was divine, born from the union of the mighty Sea god and the nurturing Earth herself.

His lover was Tingis and with her he gave life to two daughters. 

Any wanderer passing through was compelled into a grueling wrestling match with him. A trial where defeat was met with demise. From the human skulls he collected in this grim contest, he fashioned an awe-inspiring temple, a monument to his father. A most magnificent temple, resounding the human folly of empty heads stacked one on top of another in Poseidon’s great hall. No one was stronger than Anteus, and the skulls mounted higher and higher.

It was his mother, the earth, who kept him strong. Her throbbing magnetism pulsed through her son’s veins as long as he kept in close contact with her.  But one day, they say, a great hero came. A man of flesh and bones. He unraveled the enigma of Anteus's potency and in a web of deceit, subdued the invincible giant. Thus, the reign of Anteus came to an end....

This work is made in conjunction with the M'zora stone circle, and is told to anyone who wants to hear the story. Contact me to book a telling. 

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