Reliquary 2

4K Video, 2020

Reliquary 2 was a response to COVID-19 and the subsequent lockdown. The film is a work formed of animated sequences and drone footage from Achiampong’s personal archives, featuring an original score.

Created as a meditation on a period of separation between the artist and his children, observing his familial narrative within the pandemic and the trauma of forced isolation during unprecedented times. Speaking directly to his children, Reliquary 2 is an archive of contemplative prose and a historical record documenting this surreal and challenging period.

Ancestral and familial relationships are integral to the artist’s examination of postcolonial identities and previous works have been based on revisiting memories of the past with his mother; Reliquary 2 consciously projects towards the future by using the period of lockdown to provide and shape a dialogue with his progeny. Engagement in this form of intergenerational dialogue allows the experiences of that point in time to be regarded with a consideration that had been historically absent in the treatment of his  own ancestor’s narratives.

Agency and technology continue to be a primary focus in the artist's practice and have proven prescient especially as a response to the period of enforced quarantine. Digital technology became relied upon as the sole means of interaction and communication, and as a consequence has become embedded within our daily lives becoming an intimate projection of ourselves. 

Reliquary 2 features animation by Wumi Olaosebikan and is a continuation of the Relic Traveller series. Mixing visual poetry with generational healing, the series explores past, present, and future, through narratives of Pan Africanism and African diasporic identity in relation to colonialism, postcolonialism and the heightened nationalism of recent times.

Reliquary 2, produced with funding from John Hansard Gallery