Aux innocents les mains pleines
Matongé, a diverse neighbourhood located in the heart of Brussels named after a bustling market in Congo established during Belgian colonial rule, is a testament to the legacy of colonialism. The past continues to cast a shadow over the present. At the border of the neighbourhood stands a towering statue of King Leopold II, the infamous monarch who owned and terrorized Congo as his personal colony.
Killing millions, he implemented brutal practices against the country's population one of the most common of which was the amputation of hands.
The statue, which depicts King Leopold II on horseback, has a prominent feature that serves as a powerful symbol of the brutality of Belgian colonialism: the King's hand. This hand, which looms over the community, evokes a sense of unease and reinforces the ongoing impact of oppression.