An Ear of Mud, Another of Dough
We walk through a small dark corridor until we enter a room with the sound of many flies. On a huge wall there are many little sculptures in the shaped as ears, on the opposite wall faces are looking at us in a video. The people on the screen smile and they lift their shoulders to say “and why should I care?”.
An Ear of Mud, Another of Dough is an Egyptian saying, which is based on a tale. Goha is the funny character of little adventures with a moral ending and he's the protagonist of our story.
One day he arrived home, happy as usual, while his wife was busy preparing the bread. Immediately she started complaining. “Ahhh, in this horrible little house there is nothing! Your children are terrible. and stop eating on my sofa!” — she shouted at her husband. So Goha took some dough for the bread and put it onto his ear, to avoid listening to his grumbling wife, and walked to the backyard. His wife continued, following her husband “You can't go on like this! Talk to your children! Fix the roof! Set the table!” So Goha took some mud from the ground and he put it onto the other ear. “Yes! Yes.” — he then said to his wife smiling, happy and indifferent with an ear of mud and another of dough.
He could simply have said that we shouldn't avoid problems, that it's necessary to face reality and that it's necessary to look for the truth. He could say that there are too many people who do terrible things to others and then hide themselves, pretending that it's not their responsibility. He could have shouted it or spit it. Instead he decided to tell it as a story, sweetly.
The work was made for the Cairo International Biennale in 2001 and won the Grand Prize. It was installed in a room with artificial walls.
The documentary video An Ear of Mud, Another of Dough was produced during the Cairo Biennale and shown in Sondrio, Italy (Ambiente: le aree non protette).
The jury of the Dak'Art Biennale selected the video installation An Ear of Mud, Another of Dough. The work will be installed in a 3 x 9 meters room in May 2002 in Dakar, Senegal.