I Am Because You Are

A collaboration with visual artist Sonya Rademeyer and Baroque singer Chloe Lam (Hong Kong)

  • Ticket Price: R25.00
  • Duration: 8mins 11sec
  • Age Recommendation: 16+
  • Genre: Performance Art
  • Language:

I Am Because You Are is a site-specific performative collaboration between Sonya Rademeyer (visual artist) and Baroque singer Chloe Lam (Hong Kong). Filmed in an abandoned paper factory during the OtherLandsOtherSounds Residency held in Góis (Portugal) in 2018, the work comments on the fragility of the current global environmental status. During the 8’11” performance the central figure, dressed in a paper skirt covered with SonicScetches, initially releases a black powder from her cupped hands in front of her and follows by smearing her arms with the same powder. The powder, made from local charred cork trees due to ravaging fires in the region because of ever-rising global temperatures, points towards imminent and devastating environmental changes on planet Earth. The singer, similarly dressed in a paper outfit, circles the performer repeatedly singing ‘Ubuntu’, a Nguni word roughly translating to ‘I am because we are’. Lam’s haunting chanting is both a mourning for the current Anthropogenic crisis but at the same time, is a song of hope. In the current reality of COVID-19, perhaps humanity is at the intersection of taking hands collaboratively in order to create global change

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Performer: Sonya Rademeyer

Singer: Chloe Lam

Video: Beatriz M Barrio

Sound: Filipe Sousa

Filmed in Portugal as part of 2018 Other Lands Other Sounds (OLOS) Residency


Sonya Rademeyer
Sonya Rademeyer is a South African visual artist based near Cape Town, South Africa. She is interested in exploring empathy through deep listening. Using both sound and movement she strives to visualize the fragility of empathy placing it within culture at large. Her work has been published in Interalia Magazine (UK) an on-line platform at the intersection of art, science and consciousness that encourages debate and critical thinking. A graduate of Willem de Kooning Academie (Netherlands) she has participated in multiple international group shows and has represented South Africa at the 2008 DAK’Art Biennale (Senegal). She has participated in numerous international residencies and regularly collaborates with artists from other disciplines. Since 2018 she has incorporated a performative element to her work which was visible in an experimental collaborative performance at the 2019 Vrystaatse Kunste Fees (VKF), funded by the Andrew Mellon Foundation and nominated for an award. She was commissioned for a drawing performance in London (2019) alongside a Baroque Quartet. In 2020 she was commissioned to create a work for VKF which will premiere in October 2020.

Chloe Lam
Chloe Lam gained her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Music at Hong Kong Baptist University, passing with distinction in Voice (2012) whilst also studying piano and percussion. She received numerous scholarship awards as well as winning different championships in voice competitions in Hong Kong. In 2016 she started studying at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London (UK) where she obtained her Master in Historical Performance (Soprano) in 2018. Chloe subsequently was awarded a Junior Fellowship of Historical Performance (Soprano) at the infamous Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2019. She is known as a Soprano Soloist and an ensemble singer of note.