One evening in January 2011, as an interdisciplinary group of journalists, poets, rappers and hip-hop artists gathers for a tea session and debating on current affairs, comes one of the numerous power outages. This was one outage too much. They launch the movement Y’en a marre (enough is enough !) to raise civic awareness and ignite what became a massive social revolt, unprecetended in Senegal thus far.
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On 23 June 2011, as the National Assembly prepares to vote a constitutional bill, which would allow candidates for presidential election to be elected through a double bid proposing a President and a Vice President with only 25 % of votes, there is a strong mobilization of people and opposition parties. They meet on Soweto Square, in front the National Assembly, to protest against this vote. This attempt to amend the constitution is seen by most citizens as a serious breach of the established republican rules and as a violation of the democratic tradition. It is also perceived by the national and international community as a preparation for an electoral coup from the part of President Abdoulaye Wade, who enjoys a comfortable majority in the National Assembly.
These two events build the foundations of a long serie of street protests, civic actions and political mediation of which clashes between protesters and police will be the most visible reflection.
The exhibition CHRONICLE OF A REVOLT : photographs of a season of protest is a time document of a season of intense political and social activity that led to the peaceful democratic outcome of the recent presidential election in Senegal. Twenty photographers, mostly Senegalese, present their stories of this process of civic awareness. It is the tale of Senegal’s commitment to democracy and social dialogue combined with a strong desire for change of leadership and respect of constitutional laws.
Curated by Koyo Kouoh and Camille Ostermann, the exhibition shows more than 300 works of Alioune Mbaye, Amadou Mbaye, Antoine Tempé, Cheikh Ahmed Tidjane Ndiaye, Christof E, Elise Fitte-Duval, Erick Christian Ahounou, Elias Aba Milki, Gabriela Barnuevo, Jacques Daniel Ly, Jean-Baptiste Joire, Mamadou Gomis, Rebecca Blackwell, Rose Skelton, Sidy Mohamed Kandji, Sidy Yansane, Sylvain Cherkaoui, Tamsir Ndir and Toure Béhan.
The exhibition is accompanied by a highly illustrated catalogue including a reader with essays by Alioune Tine, Alpha Amadou Sy, Boubacar Boris Diop, Fadel Barro, Ibrahima Wane, Ismaila Madior Fall, Issa Samb, Mame Aly Konte, Mactar Fall and Penda Mbow.