An article by Severine Grosjean
La Boîte à Idée is a small house nestled in the heart of a popular district of Dakar. It\’s a sharing space open to the world. The Boite à idées evolves according to the hours or according to the people it hosts. Space also evolves over time and the work that is done there. This space of life and work is open to those who are interested in culture, curious or lost people to share the world of Wakh\’art coffee time. The Boite à idées is aptly named, through encounters and exchanges, a plethora of projects was born in this space of creation. The house has become an exhibition space and houses various works by artists. “Art is a factor of development. This is the slogan of Wakh\’Art (“speaking art”, in Wolof). This association, which promotes culture in Dakar, was founded in March 2011 by Ken Aicha Sy, 29, a young designer by training. The cultural events and projects carried by this entity are held, mainly, within La Boîte à idées, a house with an arty look. “Many projects around Wakh\’Art are born here, says Ken Aicha Sy. It\’s a bit like Andy Warhol\’s Factory, no less insane, a place of passage for artists and curious eager to discover the latest trends. “
Since 2011, Ken Aicha Sy multiplies caps: blogger, cultural activist, curator, but also manager of the label WAM, founded with the rapper Moulaye. “But Wakh\’art also extends to manage ment, programming and collaborates with digital music distribution platforms,” says the young woman, before adding that her structure will soon launch in the coproduction of short and feature films. Inside, the walls, covered with graffiti, are a quilt like the activities of Wakh\’Art, both a generator of events and a megaphone for artists. Place of residence, a reservation is enough to sleep, visit the house or participate in showcases, workshops, exhibitions, performances, film screenings as monthly Sunday brunches, during which creators present their works in the context of exhibitions-sales . In fact, this house in Mermoz is constantly boiling.
The room and the studio are decorated with furniture from the Amre Gallery, located in Almadies, and with objects from a workshop in Dakar, Atelier 221. Soon, the house should accommodate another room for those present in Dakar as part of an internship or training for a period of three to six months. The temporary tenant or the visitor can also choose to offer the works of the Amber Gallery and Atelier 221: paintings, sculptures, posters and other works of art. “We do not take any percentage on the sale of works. The selling prices are those set by the artists. A “concept store” dimension that also concerns certain works exhibited in the house. We privilege the tenants with an artistic sensitivity, of passage to mount initiatives close to our cultural activities.
Another future project within La Boîte à Idées: the setting up of a digital radio that will focus on alternative culture, news from the digital sector, African cinema or the history of hip-hop. hop. An umpteenth initiative that should ensure the creative bubbling of this atypical address.