Chapter One: A Certain Kind of Energy
This personal documentary is an immersion in the daily life of Congo DR. This series arose from Leonard Pongo's need to see his country from a different point of view than the often-depicted crises. This story offers a vision of the country as experienced from within by focusing on daily life rather than on the country’s conflicts.
"I tried to depict my country intimately and subjectively, not trying to deliver truth but striving to relate to a peoples’ reality and to reconstruct my own."
Leonard Pongo, 2017
Chapter Two: The Necessary Evil
"When I decided to fly and live in my country of origins for a few months, I was hoping to find a spiritual life in Africa. I was interested in the churches of the awakening because of their popularity and theatricality. I thought that by approaching such a widely spread phenomenon I could understand the Congolese society and find a place where people could walk on their spiritual path."
- Leonard Pongo, 2017
In a mostly Christian country, where 90% of the population attends weekly service, Protestant and alternative beliefs have risen in DR Congo in the past 20 years. This development has led to a constant increase of independent churches lead by self proclaimed leaders. Today the spread of these churches comes on par with the Roman Catholic and the official Protestant churches. These independent churches have known a steady growth since the 1990s in Congo DR and are usually led by pastors who claim to have received God’s powers and to have heard his will.
By returning to the churches for a few months I discovered a system that at time seemed rotten and exploitative, but where the believers’ faith was real. Their experience in such a space could transcend the environment, making the impact of these churches much more difficult to evaluate."
Chapter Three: The Uncanny
"A world conditioned by inner conflicts, reflected through the intimate links developed with the many who gave me access to their private life."
- Leonard Pongo, 2017
The series was conducted by collaborating with friends, family, and local TV teams in order to get a grasp of the news that is relevant at the local level, hoping to understand the events that rhythm the daily life of the city’s inhabitants.