Live performance atAsia House, 2014.


In my childhood home, my mother kept plastic flowers. As a child I thought these flowers were real and would touch them only to be confused by their too hard stalks. The beauty of plastic, she would say, is that it never grows old, is cheaper and doesn’t cause allergies. I grew up to resent plastic flowers and yet strangely lured by them too because they remind me of another time and place i.e. my childhood. Perhaps something in this relationship imitates my relationship to ‘home’ or to be more precise, ‘the immigrant-in-a-new-land home’ – a coincident longing for and rejection of ‘roots’. 

HESTIA is named in honour of one of Greek’s most honoured deities - Goddess of the Hearth described as imposing, discreet, immobile, and calm presiding over the centre of the Earth, the centre of home, desiring neither change nor adventure. Hestia – Goddess of Settlement - also supervised the state and the establishment of new colonies.   

Throughout this project I’ve been reflecting on how the Artist-as-Nomad lives in relationship to home and state. I’ve been thinking to what and who and where we belong. And whether modern nomadism is a poetic choice, a survival strategy or turning away from? HESTIA plays with embodying multi-layered experiences of in-between-ness. My own relationship to place is on the one hand, rickety and disposable and on the other, compulsive and demanding, and it is through this lens that I seek to articulate how we live in relationship to place and ‘belonging’. 

Part of Artist as Nomad installation and performance at Asia House, 2014.  

Choreography & performance: Amaara Raheem
Sound score: Tobias Stürmer
Dramaturgy & Photography: Michelle Outram  
Supported by: Creativeworks London, Roehampton Dance, Asia House. 
Photos by Michelle Outram