The TALKING OBJECTS ARCHIVE is a digital platform looking at questions of decolonial knowledge production and will be launched in December 2024.

The archive is strongly informed by the accompanying ongoing artistic research project TALKING OBJECTS LAB and is interested in polyperspectivity and plural knowledge systems. Starting with objects from the collection of European and African Museums, we are fanning out a polyphonic universe of knowledge. Objects are thus made to speak – TALKING OBJECTS – serve as door openers and enable a different form of relating. The archive is developed together with African Digital Heritage (Nairobi) and a variety of thinkers and artists experimenting with text, images, audio and video to create their own cosmologies of objects in digital space.

The digital archive will be open to the public and is aimed at researchers, practitioners working in the arts and those interested in decolonial perspectives on knowledge production.


Digital Team

  • Chao Tayiana Maina, Cheryl Ogada, Mutanu Kyanya, Muthoni Mwangi, Wairimũ Nduba (African Digital Heritage)
  • Alisa Verzhbiskaya, Danielle Rosales, Robin Coenen (Visual Intelligence)
  • Erik Stein
  • Isabel Raabe, Jeanne Nzakizabandi (TALKING OBJECTS)

Participating museums:

  • Musée Théodore Monod, Dakar
  • Grassi Museum für Völkerkunde, Leipzig
  • Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum, Cologne
  • Museum der Europäischen Kulturen, Berlin
  • Museum Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt am Main


Funded by: Die Beauftragte der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien/BKM (Federal Cultural Commissioner for Culture and the Media), KfW Stiftung, Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung, Auswärtiges Amt (Federal Foreign Office), Goethe-Institut.