Museum of the Revolution
These photographs were taken on long walks through the streets of African capitals, including Johannesburg, Durban, Maputo, Beira, Harare, Nairobi, Kigali, Kampala, Addis Ababa, Luanda, Libreville, Accra, Dakar and Dar es Salaam, and the series takes its title from the Museum of the Revolution in Maputo, Mozambique, which is located on Avenida 24 Julho. On July 24, 1875, it marked the end of an Anglo-Portuguese conflict over possession of the territory that was decided in favor of Portugal. One hundred years later, the name of the avenue remained the same because Mozambique’s independence from Portugal was proclaimed in June 1975 and now on July 24 is Nationalization Day.
In the Museum of the Revolution there is a panoramic painting produced by North Korean artists that represents the liberation of the capital from Portuguese colonial rule. It illustrates the rhetoric of a revolution when the leader and his followers parade through the streets and avenues, traced with greatness by the colonial powers. These streets, named and renamed, function as silent witnesses to the ebb and flow of political, economic and social changes of power and become a museum of the many revolutions that have taken place in African countries in the last 65 years.
In the photographs of Tillim, the streets of these African capitals reflect a new reality, distinct from the economic stagnation caused by the socialist policies that usually accompany African nationalism, the reality of reconstruction and business, and new sets of aspirations imbued with values capitalists.