SIAO 2006

The tenth International Art Fair in Ouagadougou (SIAO) is one of the most important international events in Burkina Faso. The biennial fair took place from October 27 to November 5 and had as theme ‘African Art and Fair Trade’. This ‘fair trade’ is very trendy nowadays, but unfortunately, not much of it was reflected in the exposed art. The most striking example: a stand from Niger offered necklaces with a sticker ‘Made in China’…

The entrance of the Fair.

The big stage. Look at the poster: the catchword of the alterglobalists is being recycled. ‘Another life is possible’, take your chance and win the jackpot!

Art from all over Africa. Since halfway the nineties, it is forbidden to take pictures of the art objects. Too many Chinese came over to imitate the art industrially and bring them to the market at low prices… Now at least they have to buy the objects they want to imitate.

At least as interesting as the art, we discovered many transformed agricultural products made by farmer organisations and small transformation companies.

Many stands offered medicines for all possible diseases. This soap was unbeatable. Would Wim finally get rid of his sinusitis?

Burkinese rice is hard to find at our place in Ouahigouya. On SIAO there was a delegation from the rice cooperative of Sourou.

These women are demonstrating how to make karité butter. Karité is the fruit of the karité tree. The grains of the fruits are used to make karité butter, a healthful cream that is part of many cosmetics.

Sometimes we had the impression to be in Europa. Who had ever thought to find candy floss in Burkina?