Angelica Mesiti’s newest work Mother Tongue, 2017, presented for Divided Worlds, was made in the city of Aarhus in central Denmark and filmed in a number of locations and communities, including the iconic town hall designed by Arne Jacobsen and Eric Møller; the Rosenvangsskolen (elementary school) in nearby Viby; DOKK1, the ‘world’s best new library’; and in the apartments and urban spaces of Gellerupparken – a housing complex originally designed as a ‘new town’ of Corbusian-style towers, on the city’s perimeter.

Mother Tongue creates a new kind of ensemble for Denmark, one comprised of ancient and contemporary rhythms, traditional and unconventional songs, and personal feats of balance, poise, individualism and collectivism. In various scenarios we encounter juxtapositions of musicality, movement and place. In her melancholic, yet optimistic creation, Mesiti’s newly assembled Danish community embraces communality and difference. Each of the groups longs for and maintains a rhythm and delicate balance, which is at times syncopated between old and new, and all live in the same beautiful place, where the moon hovers in a bright-blue night sky.


Mother Tongue is commissioned by Aarhus 2017 – European Capital of Culture, in association with the
2018 Adelaide Biennial and is supported by Købmand Herman Sallings Fond, The Obel Family Foundation, 15. Juni Fonden, Kvadrat, ege, Byggeselskab Olav de Linde and Panasonic Nordic – Danmark

The artist gratefully acknowledges

Bridget Ikin – Producer
Bonnie Elliott – Director of Photography
Merete Stubkjaer – Line producer
Kasper Rasmussen – Sound Recordist
Michael Filocamo – Data Wrangler
Rasmus Molbæk – Camera Assistant
Andreas Thorsted – Production Assistant
Liam Egan – Sound designer
Billy Wychgel – Colourist

Circus performers:
Aslak Mackinnon
Maria Sorensen
Shan Safir Eidnes
Roha Ibrahim

Rami Mohamed

Simona Abdullah

Lei Lei:
Maryam Mursal
Libaan Sabrie
Artam Abdi Agaade

Students of Rosenvangskole

Staff singers of Aarhus Kommune

Ramallah Scouts

Jaffra Dancers