Entering into Njaimeh Njie’s installation is like walking into a memory. Easy family conversations fill and shape the space, and the voices fade and emerge as we move from living room, to kitchen, and back. Figures appear throughout the rooms, animating the otherwise darkened spaces. Here, Njie recreates a family home that has been lived in and loved for a long time, but the boxes, suitcases, and missing items against the aged wallpaper imply a move in progress.
Home can be a space where families gather, share stories, and fortify bonds. Home can also be a site of precarity, particularly for Black families in the face of displacement, gentrification, and intergenerational changes. Njie’s installation asks us to reflect on the nature and importance of family, memory, and tradition, but also asks us to ponder what we take with us when the time comes to leave home.