Were Were Liking born in 1950 in Bondé , Cameroon , is a self-taught painter, sculptor, writer and stage director. She took an interest at first in traditional literature and particularly in the rituals of the Bassa region. She then settled in Côte d’Ivoire , taking an enthusiastic interest in Malian, Zairian and Nigerian cultures. Liking is widely thought of as a pioneer in contemporary African creative expression, her works drawing attention to the potential of African literature to renew and regenerate its own forms. Her texts display the crossing of numerous genres and she explores stylistic features that are present in oral traditions, viz., praise-naming, lullaby, allegorical and etiological tales, proverbs, legends and myths. For her ‘poetry is the language of the heart and the mind; poetry is form, rhythm, sound and colour … that is why when poetry is written down with words, these words reveal easily the colours, the forms and sounds the musicality and the richness of which, when projected like pictures, cannot escape the person reading or listening to it’..
After six years of academic research and gaining experience from local and international tours, Liking’s concern has been to ensure that her research will be of widest benefit to African artists. In 1985, she created Ki-Yi M’bock in Abidjan, a pan-African artistic creation and production group covering every contemporary expression, including performing arts, literature and audio-visual arts. It was later to became Ki-Yi Village, a training centre for artists from all over the region. The Village was officially opened as Pan-African Ki-Yi Training Centre in 2001 where the internationally renowned group Ki-Yi M’bock worked. Loyal to the name of the group, “Ultimate knowledge of the Universe”, Ki-Yi artists promote a multidisciplinary aesthetic in conformity with African tradition .
On ne Raisonne pas avec le Venin (You Can’t Reason with Venom), Saint-Germain-des-Pres, 1977
La Puissance de Um (Um’s Power), CEDA, 1979
Contes d’initiations feminines (Tales of Female Initiation), Classiques Africains, 1983
Une Nouvelle Terre: theatre Rituel (A New Ritual Theatre), Les Nouvelles Editions Africains, 1987
L’Amour –cent-vies (Love across a Hundred Generations), 1988