2015, Sun, Jun 21

A Family Portrait

With Stefanie Schlüter

Ciné-Journal Suisse | News from Goma, Bébé Gorille a 5 mois, February 19, 1960, 12 min | Swiss Federal Archives CH-BAR J2.143#1996/386#898#2*

Ciné-Journal Suisse | News from Goma, Bébé Gorille a 5 mois, February 19, 1960, 12 min | Swiss Federal Archives CH-BAR J2.143#1996/386#898#2*

Imagine your little sister weren’t a person, but an ape. Your parents would hold the baby ape in their arms, change its diapers, give it a bottle. What would your family life be like? Would you be able to talk to the baby ape? What games would you play with her? Would the little ape really be your sister or “just” a pet? This thought experiment is not made up out of thin air because there have been many attempts to raise apes like human children – and aren’t the apes we humans’ closest relatives?

In the workshop with Stefanie Schlüter, the kids will take the idea further. A film program will introduce them to the iconography of ape and family imagery and some of the aspects of the Ape Culture exhibition will also be included. Finally, the young participants will create their own life-sized family portraits of their families with a young ape. This puts us all on a level playing field: humans and animals, children and apes.