The group exhibition is curated by Eddy Kamuanga with works by Alexis Peskine, Eddy Kamuanga, Vitshois Mwilambwe Bondo and Gosette Lubondo.
Eddy Kamuanga, Pose, 2022. Acrylic and oil on canvas, 169.5 x 148.5cm. Courtesy of the artist & Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery.
The Zidoun-Bossuyt gallery, under the impetus of Eddy Kamuanga, presents ‘Dialogues’. It is significant to see Alexis Peskine there, who, far from being an unknown, is a guest of honour in this crossroads of views and creation(s). What began as an irresistible ambition to emerge as Congolese and African artists is confirmed through this exhibition. Today, this emergence is global, reflected in the prolific production of artists from Africa and its diasporas. The gallery has turned its walls into a testimony to this. The time is ripe for exchange and self-affirmation. What does the association of the works presented here reflect? Once the link has been made between their respective trajectories, their approach to figuration, perspective and composition all come together to focus on identity. A point on which this generation of artists seems to want to linger. ‘Dialogues’ shows a panoply of physiognomies, behaviours and states of mind. But not only that. We can detect a creative impulse and an aesthetic that demand dialogue.
Alexis Peskine, Assiê Fian’ (Burning Ground), 2020. Moon gold leaf, nails, coffee and earth on lumber core wood, 150 x 110cm. Courtesy of the artist & Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery.
This project is an opportunity to bring together four artists who have a singular approach to history and the present. Although the landscapes that inspire them differ, Vitshois Mwilambwe, Gosette Lubondo, Alexis Peskine and Eddy Kamuanga share a common vision, a concern for justice and reparation, and the dialogue that this implies. Through their work, they convey emotions that create an inevitable debate. Gosette Lubondo interacts with abandoned spaces through her photographic settings to better question the fragility of power and the relationship with time, which have damaged the identity of these places. This heritage is an essential component of society. Alexis Peskine, with his large-scale portraits of the African diaspora, creates a dialogue with his African roots, hammering nails and gold into wood stained with coffee, mud and other materials. The figurative and visual result, through the application of nails, is reminiscent of the energetic Nkisi (Kongo) power figures. With his paintings, Eddy Kamuanga attempts to dialogue with an unjust past in order to better penetrate the grey areas of the present. Vitshois Mwilambwe, with his paintings and collages on canvas, tackles the issues of the destruction of the image of colonial representation, giving life to emblematic and heterogeneous figures from African history. Whether in the framing, the point of view or the choice of colours, we are confronted with an interpreted reality where there is a will for a Dialogue about justice.
Vitshois Mwilambwe Bondo, Queen Nanny, 2022. Collage and acrylic on canvas, 250 x 250cm. Courtesy of the artist & Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery.
In the works in this exhibition, the African, diasporic or globalised human condition appears fragmented, yet unified. Are we not, after all, by nature fragmented beings for whom self-expression becomes a matter of dialogue and relationship? Alexis, Gosette, Eddy and Vitshois, an obvious gathering for those familiar with their work and their path, their works having shared a space on previous occasions. Still, nothing is obvious to those who are afraid of conversation. The conversation that takes place through these crossed gazes could not be more opportune. At the crossroads of their creative maturity, and demonstrating a mastery of their art, the works that make up this exhibition offer piercing, poetic and committed levels of reading. The figurative rigour of the paintings, plates and prints on display is brought to life by the questions they raise, the statements they imply, and the heritage they appropriate. These four artists propose a discussion between their environment, their history, their identity and the way they represent them, a dialogue between them as well, but above all a perfect need to feel like a miracle is possible. ‘Dialogues’ are already sparking others.
Gosette Lubondo, Dernière célébration, 2022. Photograph. Image Dimensions: 58 x 100cm. Courtesy of the artist & Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery.
Extract from the essay written by Jean-Sylvain Tshilumba Mukendi for the exhibition’s catalogue. ‘DIALOGUES’ is on view from the 5th of May to the 4th of June 2022 at Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery in Luxembourg. For more information, please visit Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery.