When it comes to truth, I wouldn't dare to tell it.

When it comes to truth, I wouldn't dare to tell it.

Recently, I started writing a book consisting of diaries, and dialogues I had with other artists and writers. And today I am going to read the second and the third chapters from this book.
The second chapter is called [When it comes to truth, I wouldn't dare to tell it]
The third chapter is called [Let the sea eat me]



2007 while I was searching on the Internet for the English definition othering, accidentally I found a video documentation for a performance made by an artist called Haroun Kanshour.

Since then - accidentally -  I started to meet Haroun in each residency I had. I met him in Karachi, Salzburg, Istanbul, Tokyo, Beirut, Zurich and other cities except for Cairo where I’m based.

I only meet him in the state of travelling or moving, and I guess in the state of migrating, which I haven’t experienced yet.

Each time we meet we discuss several issues but mainly research, but mainly us, but mainly others, but mainly travel,  but mainly art.

For those who don’t know Harou Kanshour. Kanshour is a Somali artist and performer based in Berlin.

What makes me interested in him and his practices, his early performance in 2001, when he started his performance at a theatre in Mogadishu. Saying:
My work as an artist is to produce “art” for those people called “audience”; therefore today the relation between you and me is the relation between an artist and his audience. His audience!

The audience does not choose their artist, but the artist does choose his audience

So if you find my speech today controversial, harmful, unlawful, misleading, malicious, or discriminatory; It’s Art, it’s fake, it's not real.


Last time we met, we were in Paris, Kanshour was giving me some tips on how I can create an interesting story.

The interesting story is the story has no end, Kanshour said.


I allowed myself to make fun of him.
Kanshour, what you just said is very close to what Shahrazad did in One Thousand and One Nights: the story has no end.

Not at all, the story of Shahrazad has an end. The end of the story of Shahrazad is the end of Shahrazad, Kanshour said.

I didn’t get your point, I said.

Look, never tell a story. Make the story reveal itself, and you are just in a position of someone who delivers it.

I asked him: but how can you tell a story in your performance from your position and..Kanshour interrupted me saying no no no, this is not me. I am performing Kanshour, Kanshour in the context of art. Art is a context based on manipulation, different from another context in the social space.

So, me as Kanshour in the context of art different than me in the social space.

Kanshour are you aware of the rudeness that your performance entails? I said to Kanshour commenting on his known performance othering and order.

Kanshour said to me: Maybe because I try to follow the reality, my speech becomes rude. I’m trying to follow and investigate the truth based on facts, based on reality, avoiding being kind, my speech will become rude.

The truth will hurt you... You other… my truth is different from your truth...and nobody cares about the other's truth.


Very simple, I try, to be honest, I try! But I’m not, but I try, but I'm not...I try, to be honest with my audience even if they feel that I have offended them.

Give the Audience the truth even if they do not want it.

A sort of totalitarian strategy, it works sometimes.

I guess Kanchuur believes that the responsibility of the artist requires him to be totalitarian.


Kanshour continued...

The line between the truth and the untruth, the truth and lie, the truth and misrepresentation.

This line is like the carpet that prevents your feet to touch the ground and by the time you forget the ground, you are only about the carpet.
A carpet
A huge carpet
a pretty carpet
Where a man is never seen
A pretty carpet
Where a man is never seen
The carpet is out of the international marketing ethical issues
The carpet is so mean
The real handmade carpet
The hand is made a machine
A machine textiles the carpet
And the hand is in the stock market
A carpet
A huge carpet
a pretty carpet
Where a man is never seen
Gazing at the huge carpet
Over the global transmission
A huge carpet
It seems stable
A huge carpet
It seems stable
ْUnderneath the Clash of Civilisations
A sort of reservation
The carpet is
What I am practising now are just words combined as speech for you
So my thoughts are transmitted to you become
Commodifications in the art context
apocalyptic vision
The carpet
For others, it seems to fly
Replace nations with other
They used to fly by
It is never damaged
As long as the earth is round
As much as sin cannot purify
Well made
Well made
Ideological textiles
Complicated components
Ideological textiles
Complicated components
Different styles
The carpet is never damaged
The carpet is mean
But we are the opponents
From ideological strings of transparent colours
Defending from a punch of the opponent
Keep your ideology
Keep your ideology, compare it to no others
Ideology keeps you far
Historical matter
Wherever your positions are
The carpet is out of the story
Turn out with tact and cunningness
In my accent History is different than His-Tory
Tory is to be a conservative
The carpet versus itself
If history is such a story
And the carpet is a line
To be under the line
Or Over the line
It's different when an object is moving  
Creates a sign
Exoteric shape  
An action define
Esoteric shape
Many shapes combine
We are here
Out of the truth
We are here
The shape that is uncouth
Uncouth is to be unfamiliar
We are here
We have access to define each detail
We have the knowledge
We Have
We create the knowledge  
We control the knowledge.

Then I did ask him again and again:
Haroun are you sure about what you are saying?
Kanshour shouted at my face saying:
If I didn't tell the truth, I would end up like Diego
If I didn't tell the truth, I would end up like Diego
I will end up like Diego Diaz
I wondered who Diego Diaz is?


2010 Kanshour found a court reporter contains ten pages describe a court of someone called Diego Diaz dated January 10th, 1634,
Diego was accused of disrespect the Catholicism.
In Cuenca city or as it was called the Castle. There was a conversation between the Judge and Diego Diaz after hearing the defence.


[Sound track]
The Judge
Mr Antonio Malo, and his maid, Ms Dimiala, the accused’s neighbours, came to Cuenca Court. And they informed the court, that you were cooking with oil instead of bacon grease, and you were eating meat during the fasting days. You are eating tuna meat, sardines, and cheese, and you are not suffering from any diseases. You and your wife don’t attend the mass, and you are not teaching your children the prayers. You are bathing every Friday. They mentioned that you meet Moors in a hotel where you and your wife enter the reception room with guests and speak in a strange language. It seems to be the Arabic Language because the servants don’t understand it. Based on that the court has accused you of disrespecting religion.
[Me as Diego]
Your Honour, Dimiala is telling lies. I fired her because she is an alcoholic. Antonio has a hotel like me, or you can say, he is a competitor. Regarding my friends we were talking in the language of Valencia because I lived there for a long time and I have a lot of friends there. And for the habits of eating and bathing; Your Honor my family lived their entire life in Rabeh castle, they were servants for the Catholic Kings, and they were dealing with the other Moroccans’ servants, so my family gained their habits of eating and bathing every Fridays, and of course I followed the same habits. If I’m not a good Christian your honor, I won’t return to Spain again.

[Sound track]
The Judge
Do you have anything to say after the experts confirmed that you had been circumcised?

[Me as Diego]
Your Honour, the Moroccans circumcised me by force. Two men were holding me from both hands and legs. After seven months of that accident I met a monk and confessed to him asking for God's forgiveness. Did circumcision by force become disrespect of the Catholicism?
[Sound track]
The Judge
After reading all the papers and hearing the witnesses and since the court has confidence in the witnesses’ affidavit and after reading Diego Diaz’ medical report which showed that he was circumcised and since we don’t have any evidence that Moroccans have done that, thus Diego Diaz circumcised himself.
Based on that he is condemned with all of the charges against him. The Cuenca City Court hearing on January 10, 1634, passed the judgment to lash Diego Diaz 200 lashes and put him on probation for a year.


According to the story, after Diego Diaz was dispossessed from Spain he left Iberia peninsula towards the Republic of Sale.


The Republic of Sale or (Republic of Bouregreg) appeared between the years 1627 till 1668 on the Moroccan Coast of the Atlantic Ocean based on Plutocratic System and its economy relied on piracy naval warfare.
In El Kassaba Square and within walking distance from the port, people were gathered to welcome new citizens: new citizens of Republic of sale, some came from Spain to escape from the Inquisition, some from Egypt to escape from the Ottoman and some from Europe to flee from the church.

Different nationalities, ethnicities, and different desires, the only thing they encountered in common was being renegades.

All these men were gathered to listen to the Lass El Behar;


Lass el-Behar came from Rabat, Morocco. He was a skillful navigator. The Spaniards and Italians knew his name only too well. Lass el-Behar was young, pretty and brave. Many captive woman and men fell deeply in love with him. But Lass el-Behar rejected the love of men and women, for his ship meant more to him than the beauty of people. Lass El-Behar loved the ship and the glorious battles, which were later to be celebrated in songs & poetry.
Lass el-Behar didn't die. He turned into a mermaid, a mermaid guarding the shore, a mermaid carrying in one hand the ship oar and the other hand a sword. A mermaid owns the sea and the victory.

Since then the pirates obey and almost worship Lass el-Behar.

Let’s get back to the story.

All these men were gathered to listen to Lass El Behar.

At night, the full moon shone down and the waves were crawling gently to the shore.

Lass El Behar appeared slowly until his body became visible to the whole desiring silent crowd.

[Monster sound Filter]

To my people who scattered over the sea
Do you fear the sea?
I guess you shouldn’t
I guess we shouldn’t
We shall be scared of land
The sea is our dissimilarity zone
The sea is where we scape
Where we encounter
Where we float
Where we drown
Where our souls gets wet
Where the water purl sound prevent our ears to hear the land
The frontier shore land
Do you fear the others on the frontier shore?
You shouldn’t
They shall be scared of you
They shall be scared of us
We are the crossers
We are the rovers
We have nothing to lose
We lost the stability
We are the doubt
The doubt of sabotage
They are the stability
So They shall be scared of you
They shall be scared of us
We raised over the surface of devastation
Devastation smell
Hey you people
Hey you, on the other shore
Look, Bebe, we are a bunch of naked corpses
Devastated corpses
Would you like to test devastation?
I'd best warn you
I'd best warn everyone
I’d best warn those on the other shore
The sea has no owner
The sea has no owner Bebe!
The only owners are those who drowned
They know how deep it is.
Suddenly Lass El-Behar disappeared
While the crowd of men gazed at the sea
No, they were gazing at the other shore
2010 I was in Barcelona and it was a good coincidence that Kanshour had his solo project show, titled “ The journey of the meteor to meet his beloved
The Object-oriented ontology show was consisting of…….
Tracing the journey of a historical figure called Afoqai.
I did some attempts to ask Kanshour about Afoqai but as usual, Kanshour never attends his show openings.
I went back home, I googled Afoqai
I wrote Afoqai, and I searched

I found this image
Afoqai in his military suit
Then I noticed that; this image not for Afoqai,
this image for Maurice, Prince of Orange, who was responsible for the Dutch Republic alliance between the Ottoman Empire and Morocco.

Also I find this image [Image-14]
of Thomas van Erpe. He took Arabic lessons with Afokai.
And also find this image [Image-15]
of a book cover which is Thomas’s book on Arabic grammar: Al Gramatica

I also found this flag, Republic of Bou Regreg flag [Image-16]

I also found this tool, a torture tool for hand use.

I also found this book, Afoqay book: The journey of the meteor to meet his beloved

So I couldn’t find any image of Afoqai on the internet

Afokai has several Nicknames, for example, Bejarano: which I think is a name that came from the Spanish word: Vejarano, which means: the person who walks alone.


The other name is “Shihab” which means Meteor. [Image-18]
What is the meteor?
Simply the meteor is a small rock or metallic body travelling through space collecting and accumulating an entire shape from different places.
And this is the name that Afoqai choose for himself when he was forced to leave Spain.
But Afoqai had strategies which were different from Diego’s.
The strategies of camouflage; one of which he applied to language.

When language withdraws; You see but you can’t read.

Afokai wrote his diaries in Aljamiado

Aljamiado: is texts, manuscripts which use the Arabic script for transcribing European languages like Spanish.

So as we see here: I did an attempt to rewrite a text in Aljamiado that I copied from the novel MAKBARA by the Spanish novelist Juan Goytisolo.
[I read the text]
The third chapter [Let the sea eat me]

Afoqai the meteor, or Lass El-Behar or Diego Diaz, and others fled, they abandoned a land and crossed the sea. They got to another land or they created their own land or they lasted in the sea or over the sea, they float or drown, some have crossed and some still didn’t.
They are not trying to achieve an objective, rather, they are aware of the crisis: the permanent crisis.
Did you hear about the permanent crisis?
Or almost permanent!
I heard
Which made me believe
That all people believe; the crisis is a permanent
All people believe is not worthy anymore of resisting
People are not capable of facing this truth
The truth of “people gave up of resisting”
Not all, but the majority did
To resist becomes a privileged position
But to cross which is not as hard as to resist
All the efforts we made
All the efforts you made
All the attempts to reform such a crisis
A few of people decided to renegade
To flee away
To dislocate
To cross the sea
To build a new memory
To build a new memory is to replace your memory with a new one
To get into a new place
You can't anymore face
Such a question
Who are you?
rather than to get out of a place
To cross the sea
To swim
To walk
To think
To think of a new city
Not a destiny
Yes it is about cities not destinies
To migrate is more about moving
To move between cities or towards a city
To move to a city that will push you to another city
To migrate
To migrate is To run, like birds in the winter
[birds in the winter] This is not a poetic metaphor, that’s what migration is in such dictionaries  
An action which has to do with Geography
To migrate, you have to be aware of geography
As a walker
In mountains, desert, and sea rover
Or a sea crosser
The new man
I am telling all those stories, because I am interested in the notion of the fugitive.
In the notion of the fugitive as a renegade
To renegade is To escape rather than resist
As an anti resistance action
The value of escaping instead of the value of resisting
I apologize
I feel jealous of the fugitives
I never dared to escape
Although I am looking for new land and a new man
But I never attempt to escape
Although I am aware that Christopher Columbus is a colonialist
But I wish I could be one of his crew members
Or one of the Jews going to the promised land
to the new land
To go to a place where you don’t have any memory
To go to a place where you don’t have any relation
To replace your memory with a new one
I never had the courage to scape
I never had
I never dared to let the sea eat me