Uprooting the Gaze : foreign places familiar patterns

/ Exposition collective

Artists :

  • Nestor Da (Burkina Faso)
  • François-Xavier Gbré (France/Ivory Coast)
  • Baudouin Mouanda (Congo-Brazzaville)
  • Zanele Muholi (South Africa)
  • Uche Okpa-Iroha (Nigeria)
  • Breeze Yoko (South Africa)

Curator :

  • Christine Eyene

Brighton Photo Fringe is pleased to announce an exhibition of five photographers from Africa in the Fringe Focus space during the festival running alongside the prestigious Brighton Photo Biennial : New Documents curated by the internationally acclaimed photographer, editor and curator Martin Parr.

Curated by Christine Eyene, ‘Uprooting the Gaze : foreign places familiar patterns’ features Nestor Da, François-Xavier Gbré, Baudouin Mouanda, Zanele Muholi and Uche Okpa-Iroha, five photographers nominated for the Fondation Blachère Prize at the 8th Bamako Encounters - African Photography Biennale (2009), and multimedia artist Breeze Yoko, shortlisted for the Fondation Blachère Prize at the 8th Dak’Art - Biennale of Contemporary African Art (2008).

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Uche Okpa-Iroha, Urban Slang, 2010. Courtesy of the artist and Fondation Blachère.

Drawing from the Fondation Blachère Collection, completed with photographs selected by the curator, ‘Uprooting the Gaze’ brings together a group of very diverse creative minds who shared a common experience of Lyon, hometown of the famous French biennale of contemporary art, as part of ‘Passages 2010 : Afrique et Créations’ a workshop and exhibition organised by the Musée des Confluences (Lyon) and Fondation Blachère (Apt) in May/June 2010, involving the photographers, multimedia artist and curator.

Following on from this project, which explored the notions of creative processes and work in progress within an unfamiliar location, ‘Uprooting the Gaze’ proposes to look at the photographic imprint, or retinal embed, specific to each practitioner. It examines how photographers respond to familiar visual patterns when placed in a situation of temporary (dis)location, a context of passing and ephemeral presence.

Underlying the concept of this exhibition is a questioning of accepted definitions of the term "African photography" as a practice that could be defined by, and contained within, an enclosed geographical space.

In addition to a selection of about 40 photographs will be showcased Breeze Yoko’s film Passages 2010, a 25-minute series of video portraits featuring the five photographers presented in this show, as well as veteran photographers Malick Sidibé and Oumar Ly who is also taking part in Brighton Photo Biennial.

Alongside the exhibition is planned a programme of talks, in presence of the photographers, in Brighton and London. A series of essays exploring the work of each photographer will be published on Afriphoto.com, the photography project of Africultures, and featured in Africultures issue on photography in Africa (December 2010).

‘Uprooting the Gaze’ was developed by curator Christine Eyene in collaboration with Brighton Photo Fringe and Fondation Blachère.

This project receives generous support from Spectrum Photographic, major photographic sponsor of the exhibition providing the highest quality in production and presentation.
The visit of all five photographers and multimedia artist to the UK is funded by the British Council under the Council’s pioneering programme Creative Coalitions, which aims to make links between Africa and Europe and to support a vibrant and sustainable African creative sector.

Media partners : Africultures.com / Afriphoto.com.

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