In wars, violence is always cruel. In the worst cases, it targets civilians: women are raped, parents can be killed in front of a child. War children in particular find it difficult to recover from trauma and often result in rebellion that leads to a spiral of war. Army soldiers also come from families: why are they willing to beat and kill their own brothers? The installation has wooden sculptures on a stand in front of the painting. In the middle is an old sage with an egg on his head symbolizing life and its fragility, as well as innocent victims. On the head of a desperate woman kneeling next to him is a broken egg with a dead embryo. On the other side of the young woman's head are pieces of the shell. Life has been destroyed and she sees the war openly and bitterly, ready for resistance. One child looks frightened in the background wondering what is happening; the other has turned his back because he cannot bear to look; the third has decided to surrender and flee; the fourth has fallen and died in shock. An elderly man leaning on his rod of power has turned his back on war, showing that he nevertheless wants to believe in the power of life.
The red garment in the foreground of the installation symbolizes danger and black sadness. On opening day, they hid under an army-dressed puppet, with whom puppetist Jacques Kpade performed a choreography designed by Victor. Lyricist John Folass also performed as part of the performance. He presented a Kalevala-like rhyme slam about the suffering and life challenges of an African in relation to Victor’s works.
In Abortion, Victor takes a stand on the position of women and young girls, the power of an adult to decide on a child’s life, and respect for life in general. As young people become independent, money, drugs and sex interest both girls and boys. Young people do not understand the serious and far-reaching consequences. Many boys quickly drift into a criminal path, but the position of girls is even more fatal. Teenage pregnancies are common, also caused by adult criminal men. When a girl wants to go on to an “easy” life or finds that the desired family life is not allowed, she wants to get rid of the fetus by any means, such as through illegal doctors, by taking doses of illegal drugs or traditional herbal remedies. While the life of the unborn child is violently destroyed, the girl’s health is endangered. The death of a young woman who tried an abortion is a tragedy for the community and a silence of shame for the whole family. Often, a family or community takes care of girls left in a desperate situation, but if loved ones are unable to help, the girls can be left completely alone. Benin’s radio and television confirm that newborns are found alive and dead, even in landfills and on the streets. In the installation of Victor’s Abortion, an elderly priestess stands in front of an antique mirror. The old mirror is like a window of history that has seen many faces. Young people look at the exterior surface of the mirror, which is not culturally significant, but the elderly see the weathered and the present from the mirror and are worried about the future.
Jaana and Victor wanted to do an art education exhibition, at least for the opening audience the wish came true. At the opening, Jaana presented her own works in English and Victor translated the speech into Mina. Known as a charismatic performer, Victor’s dramatic performance moved many to tears. Shout Without Consolation, so in the language of Mina, “Ahoua ma sé gbo”-shouts echoed on the village track of Grand-Popo several days after the opening.