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Galerie Christophe Person presents an new solo exhibition by Nyaba Léon Ouedraogo, curated by Marie Moignard

Nyaba Léon Ouedraogo, The Exit of the Lion, 2022. Baryta fine art print, pigment inkjet, 70 x 50cm. Edition of 4 plus 2 artist’s proofs

“I don’t have the chance to know, but I have the chance to meet.” This sentence from the artist says a lot about his apprehension of the world and his creative process. According to him, you only meet a person by speaking, by listening to their story.

This is what he did to get to know Mame Coumba Bang, who is not made of flesh and blood. Failing to be able to converse with the divine, he sought its substance in the scattered memory of Saints-Louisians, as one reconstitutes a puzzle with an impalpable material, a mental collage-like these abstract photographs which compose part of this series – an almost literal way of not representing this elusive figure that is Mame Coumba Bang.

If Mame Coumba Bang is not palpable, she is alive and well for the artist since she is malleable in her imagination.

As in any cult, there is an element of mystery to preserve. Seeking to encounter what Mame Coumba Bang is is transgressive. This amounts to breaking a taboo, that of the invisible, the unknown part of the pact between Mame Coumba Bang and the inhabitants of Saint-Louis. Nyaba Ouedraogo penetrates the mystery, as in the cults of initiates. He is doing us the ultimate favour by suggesting what he perceived and what, perhaps, Mame Coumba Bang whispered to him on her own.

The exhibition will be on view from the 24th of June until the 29th of July, 2023. For more information, please visit Galerie Christophe Person.

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