Children’s Game #29: La roue

Lubumbashi, DR Congo, 2021; 8:43 min
In collaboration with Rafael Ortega, Julien Devaux, and Félix Blume


Over the city of Lubumbashi looms the mampala or slag heap of the Étoile du Congo cobalt mine, its lower slopes today sifted by the clandestins, lithium hunters who risk their lives to feed our global battery market. The film rests on dramatic contrasts – tiny bright figures against the expanse of darkness; a child who can barely see over the colossal tire he fights to push uphill. Then the adrenaline rush of rolling down inside it! Yet the song the kids invented “pushing, pushing” to solve post-industrial problems, gives faith in these young carriers of D.R. Congo’s future.

Lorna Scott Fox

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