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Solo Exhibitor 2018: Rodo Abdirahman

“We reward Rodo Abdirahman for the potential demonstrated by her artistically promising video presentation, and hope the award will generate more focus on this young artist’s work and motivate her to continue to develop as an artist.”

These are the words of last year’s jury on Rodo Abdirahman. At the age of 23, she is at the very beginning of her career as n artist. Rodo Abdirahman was born in Somalia, and was a small child when she came to Denmark with her family. The video work by the artist in the Spring Exhibition 2018 has the title Bygd (“Village”) and is inspired by a trip she made to the city of Kismayoo in Somalia in the summer of 2017.

The video features a pair of twins conversing deeply in an adult fashion. Their manner here is a sharp contrast to the moments when they look directly at the viewer, and the second half of the video where they dissolve into laughter and everything becomes movingly childish.

The eggs they take turns smashing are sexually charged symbolically, which given how young the girls are can seem grotesque. But at the same time the session makes sense, precisely because of the contrast between the worlds of childhood and adulthood. The video is, in an innocent way, disturbing and melodramatic, and with the repetition of eggs being smashed and the almost theatrical way they throw the shells it creates and absurd mix of the two worlds.