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Campus happening: Homes and the homeless

Social art pioneer Helle Fuglsang explored the meaning of 'home' with Juliette Omollo, a dancer from the slums of Kibera, Kenya and the jazz band Interfoam

A performance at the Faculty of Humanities, that continues throughout the city Monday, aimed to bring to light the hardships of those who live without a home, and invisible social barriers.

Together the homeless and local residents get involved in a performance, a game that breaks the invisible walls that separate the two groups of people in society.

“The homeless live as shadows in the city because they do not come into contact with the city’s other people. The goal is to create less unwillingness to confront the homeless,” says Helle Fuglsang, a director, choreographer and mime from the Department of Theatre at the University of Copenhagen.

Not just a set of walls

The performance is an answer to the question: What does ‘home’ mean?

“Home can protect you from the environment, but it protects you also from the outside world. If there is a real meeting between the homeless and the city’s residents, both will be changed,” writes Helle Fuglsang, who is the organiser of the event.

More poetically, “home is the set of walls between people, that can make you feel at home, or not”, as one homeless person, Eco Eyes, put it on the blog that refers to the event.

Surreal approach

The performance consists of a group that goes with the homeless through the city – only with a sleeping bag in the bag. They are to conclude the day of happenings at the People’s Park in the evening.

The interactive installation is made of Amateurs Morser, a jazz band, the city sounds, and a poet, and everybody moves in a mobile performance along the homeless’s daily bottle route. Then a sleeping bag appears from a bag and the children mime group Mimosa dance the ‘out-of-sleeping-bag-dance’.

”From mime art I’ve got the surreal approach, that combined my curiosity for people’s everyday stories that form the basis of my visual productions,” Helle Fuglsang said to the University Post.

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