Quitte le Pouvoir (Wade, get out!) is a documentary film (2014 | 46′) with subtle animations. When ‘Y’en a Marre’, a collective of rappers and journalists from Dakar’s inner city, join forces to protect their democracy, Senegal’s presidential elections get a surprising turn. By using animations over the live action footage, the dark atmosphere of the tension hanging over the city is subtly highlighted.
Aida Grovestins (director, producer), Machteld Aardse (drawings for animations, producer), Hanneke van der Linden (animations), Cheikh Diarra (title song, narrator, research), Julien Grossmann (music), Allard Detiger (montage), Aart Jan van der Linden (pre-montage)
A film by Aida Grovestins
Producers: Aida Grovestins (director/producer) and Machteld Aardse (artist/producer) | Crossroads DOCS 2014
In 2011 Senegal’s President Abdoulaye Wade declares that he will run for a third term in the elections. Knowing full well that the Consitution does not allow it. ‘Y’en a marre’ (Fed Up’) is founded that same year. Using music and door-to-door campaigns, ‘Y’en a marre’ calls upon the youth to engage politically and demonstrate against Wade’s candidacy. They also urge the youth to register and use their voting card as their democratic weapon.
Y’en a marre succeeded to register 300.000 new voters, historically a record number. They have inspired young people from other West-African countries to politically engage in pacifist civil movements, to avoid the violent scenario of the ‘Arab Spring’.
This film is crowdfunded through Cinecrowd, IndieGoGo, and financially supported by The Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK), Webster University Leiden NL/ St.Louis USA
Film director: Aida Grovestins
Drawings and animations: Machteld Aardse and Hanneke van der Linden
Producers: Aida Grovestins, Machteld Aardse | Crossroads DOCS
Author title song, narrator, researcher: Cheikh Diarra
Camera: Pierre Lecomte
Sound: Alioune M’Bow & Mamadou Fall
Editor: Allard Detiger
Additional editor: Aart-Jan van der Linden
Music: Julien Grossmann, Y’en a marre, Cheikh Diarra
Sound Mixage: Michiel de Boer
Color Grading: Michiel Rummens
Country of production: Netherlands
Subtitles: English and French
Fundraising through Dutch Foundation A.D.A.P.T.
Websites: www.quittelepouvoir.com; Facebook website: https://www.facebook.com/WomenOfWaalo; Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/womenofwaalo
Aida Grovestins film director – Diamond Dust, documentary film, giving an inside look into the closed and changing world of the diamond trade in Antwerp | Dutch and Belgian TV (VPRO, CANVAS), kIDFA filmfestival; Nina Kalpeta, Holodomor Ostarbeiter | 1 hour radio-documentary, Dutch Radio-1 (VPRO)
Machteld Aardse | multi-media artist/painter – film The Island – about the excentric artist-ecologist Le Roy | Women’s Art Festival in Syria | The New York Islands Festival | Museum het Rembrandt huis | The Stedelijk W139 | De Nederlandsche Bank
Thanks to three crowd funding campaigns and a large donation by Webster University we have been able to realise this film.
Want to become a friend of Quitte le Pouvoir?
Donations can still be made to: Stichting A.D.A.P.T. – ‘crowd funding QLP’ Triodos Bank, account nr.: 198542089
Aida Grovestins (director/producer) and Machteld Aardse (artist/producer)
The inspiration for “Quitte le Pouvoir” came in 2011 when we were in Senegal doing research on a fascinating old story of resistance of queen-warriors, the Women of Waalo. Storytelling connects us and we wanted to tell and visualize this story through documentary film style and drawn-animations.
During that time in Senegal the social-political situation was quite hectic because the 85 year old President wanted to run for a third term, which was unconstitutional. At first we were very interested in the first female presidential candidate. But we were really struck by the power and engagement of a collective of young rappers and journalists, who used their raps to get the youth into the streets to protest massively. Who were these guys? What drove them? They weren’t singing about babes, cars and glorifying violence, nor did they have golden teeth. Instead they used very engaging lyrics to voice their protests. Was what was happening comparable to the Arab Spring or was it a different movement? This fascinated us and we decided that we wanted to first make a film on the story of these rappers and then later finish the story on the Women of Waalo. In this film we also wanted to use animations, in this case to symbolize the threat that one feels, but can’t always see or film.
Because the elections were coming on soon, we wanted to finance this film through crowd funding, because we knew we wouldn’t be able to make it if we had to wait for subsidies from film funds. With three successful crowdfunding campaigns we were able to finance the shooting of the film and part of the editing and post production. It’s a real low budget film and this made the making process tough and longer than we expected. The filming was at times hard, because of the violence on the streets and of the pressure and stress that this put on the rappers. They couldn’t always tell Aida where they were, as they were often hiding from the police. They got many death threats during that period.
We think that Quitte le Pouvoir is a little mirror of our time in which youth worldwide wants a new kind of society in which the power is shared as opposed to the older generation that clings to power and wants it for itself. Today the rappers / journalists as a collective are still encouraging the youth in communities all over Senegal to be new socio-political engaged citizens.
Now that the film is ready, we hope the struggle and engagement of this young generation of West-Africans can be inspiring to other youths around the world.
THE PRODUCERS / MAKERS:
Aida Grovestins is an independent film maker in Amsterdam and Senegal. After 13 years of journalism for Dutch public current affairs programs, her first documentary film ‘Diamond Dust’ was broadcast by Dutch TV (VPRO) in 2009 and by Belgian TV (CANVAS) in 2010. It premiered at the kIDFA film festival in Amsterdam in 2010. Under her company name Crossroads DOCS, she produces, researches and directs film and radio documentaries and news items. In March 2011, her radio documentary “Nina Kalpeta – Holodomor – Ostarbeiter” was broadcast by VPRO-Radio-1: ‘a moving portrait of a Ukrainian woman who survived the Great Famine in the Ukraine, only to be sent later by the Nazis as a so-called ‘Ostarbeiter’ (‘labor worker’) to Germany. In 2005 Aida Grovestins travelled to Congo Brazzaville to make a film in assignment of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on the knowledge and application of the International Law of War, amongst both Congolese rebels in the Pool-district and regular army members.
Aida Grovestins studied Political Science, International Relations (Major) and History (Bachelors) at the University of Amsterdam and Art History at the Sorbonne in Paris.
Machteld Aardse is an artist in Amsterdam. In her work she uses various media including drawing, video and performance. Aardse: “I’ll go out and look for the confrontation with my subject. The complex relationship between power and powerlessness and different world views with its specific connections and short circuits intrigues me.” After studying art history Machteld Aardse studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and got her Masters in Art at the Dutch Art Institute. Most of her work is realized in the public domain. She has exhibited at – among others – De Nederlandsche Bank, the New York Island Festival, Museum het Rembrandthuis Amsterdam, Museum Scheltema in Leiden (Netherlands), Women’s Art Festival in Aleppo, Syria.
Crossroads DOCS – STUDIO, Haarlemmerhouttuinen 167 , 1013 GM Amsterdam NL
aida.grovestins @ gmail.com
machteldaardse @ planet.nl
Stichting DOEN made it possible for the rappers of Y’en a marre to be present at the premiere of the film in the Netherlands
Producers: Aida Grovestins, Machteld Aardse; Trailer editor: Joffrey van der Vliet – Frontdoor