Quatre Yeux Quatre Yeux Quatre Yeux Quatre Yeux Quatre Yeux Quatre Yeux

Adrien Bitibaly

Quatre Yeux

Palais, Arles — 2023
SFr. 42.00
Pages: 112
Edition: First edition, 500 copies
Dimensions: 18.5 x 24 cm
Language: English, French
ISBN: 9782493123053

In Burkina Faso, tragic events (sudden death, illness, accident…) or those that deviate from the norm are invariably interpreted as the result of malevolent intervention. A culprit must therefore be identified. Raised in this culture, Adrien Bitibaly observed from a young age the significance of traditional religions in Burkinabé society.

Among the manifestations of these beliefs, accusations of witchcraft have always intrigued him. As a child, the objects or places designated to him as possessed or haunted seemed entirely ordinary, and he never understood what could trigger these denunciations. Witchcraft remains elusive, supernatural, unverifiable. Yet, the consequences of an accusation are very real: the inequalities and discriminations suffered by the accused (as these accusations predominantly target women) are numerous.

As an adult, with «Four Eyes,» Adrien Bitibaly traversed the country to meet traditional priests, individuals endowed with the «ability» to determine whether a person possesses malevolent powers and should thus be identified as a witch. What is their role in this social practice? Holders of a power whose conditions for exercise remain unknown to the majority, can they nevertheless be mistaken? His photographic work aims to reveal what can trigger witchcraft accusations. His intent is to explore the genesis of a popular belief, rather than to prove a truth.

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