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African decolonial photographic aesthetic

African decolonial photographic aesthetic

by Prof.Dr. Babacar Mbaye Diop (Cheikh Anta Diop University, Dakar)

Thu, Jan 27, 2022, 14:00, Zoom 931 4120 3142, Passcode: 154421 (RS Arts & Aesthetics)


Ben Enwonwu in his article entitled "Le point de vue de l'Afrique sur l'art et les problèmes qui se posent aujourd'hui aux artistes africains“, article published in the collective work Art contemporain africain : histoire(s) d'une notion par celles et ceux qui l'ont fait 1920-2020, invites us to a decolonial aesthetic. After all, it is up to Africans, he argues, to define their own artistic modernity and to reinvent the notion of African art. 

My aim is to show how African and diasporic photographers question the notion of Africanness in their artistic practices. Confronted with the stereotypes of the colonial imaginary, they bring a new look to African photography, describe artistic modernity with their own aesthetic codes and thus decolonise the imaginary while opening new perspectives on their own culture.

In the first part, I will discuss Malick Sidibé as one of the precursors of contemporary African photography. And with him, I will try to show how his photographic practice is decolonial.

The second part of my talk will focus on the different themes developed by contemporary African photographers such as the Moroccan Hassan Hajjaj, the Nigerian Zina Saro-Wiwa who lives in New York, the Senegalese Omar Victor Diop, the Angolan Edson Chagas or the South African Mohau Modisakeng - always with the aim of showing the decoloniality of their artistic practice.

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