New Patrons


The New Patrons
of Bifolone

Liberté Pygmée in Bifolone

Patrons: Bifolone villagers,

Commission: “Preserve traditional skills and knowledge by giving villagers the ability to shape thetransformation of their community in the twenty-first century.”

Mediators: Germain Loumpet,

Artists: Residents and artisans of Bifolone together with regional artists,

Cooperation Partners and Sponsors: Goethe-Institut Yaoundé, Fondation de France, Federal Foreign Office, Berlin,

Duration: 2014 – ongoing

Budget: 120,000 € (so far)

The Baka, a pygmy people who live in southern Cameroon’s Dja biosphere reserve, are fighting for their cultural and financial survival. After thousands of years of nomadic existence in the rainforest, the Baka were forced to create a permanent settlement in a place called Bifolone. Now the villagers want to preserve their knowledge of the forest along with their traditional artifacts while living a more modern life. Together with the anthropologist Germain Loumpet, who is serving as mediator, they have begun to create new spaces for their future: a living museum for the fabrication and display of musical instruments, a stage for their celebrated polyphonic singing, and a botanical garden. Designed to attract tourists and researchers to Bifolone, the project also includes contributions from regional artists. The village community has begun its start in the 21st century with a show of self-determination.

“We want to take the transformation of our community in the 21st century into our hands and preserve our knowledge and skills in the process.”

Village assembly of Bifolone

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