Socio-geographic explorations on the periphery of Addis Ababa, run through by a variety of borders and rifts – between agrarian and urban spatial practices, between economic and linguistic floes, between perspective and dilemma. A polyphonic audiovisual narrative of people who are forced to experience the impetuous urbanisation of African societies the hard way, recorded as a case study that expands into a complex allegory.
Addis Ababa (Finfinnee in the language of the rural Oromo people) is a rapidly growing East African metropolis. “Rift Finfinnee” evolves from the concrete observation of main and side effects of urbanisation in four extremely different settlements, located within sight of each other on the eastern outskirts of the Ethiopian capital, to an expansive composition about the dynamics of an urban turbo modernisation. The Great Rift Valley currently still (!) constitutes a both natural and symbolic barrier to limit the further tentacle-like expansion of the megacity into agricultural territory – across this and other rifts. This interim report on the situation at the rifts probes the field of tension created by unstable pasts, unreliable futures and a contested present.