An Exhibition In Tribute To Kinois Artists at Magnin-A12/09/2020 - 30/10/2020
From September 12 to October 30, 2020, Galerie MAGNIN-A and Galerie Natalie Seroussi join forces to present Kings of Kin in their two Parisian spaces.
An exhibition devoted to three emblematic artists from Kinshasa
The exhibition Kings of Kin gathers around 30 new and historical works from Bodys Isek Kingelez (1948-2015), Moké (1950-2001) and Chéri Samba (1956-) . These artists that are inspired by the everyday life, events of the Congolese society and the international news. As observers of the changes happening to their country and of its political events, their work translates the terrific energy of the Congolese society with its hopes and torments.
These « Kings of Kin », true pioneers of the Congolese artistic scene, are the true guards of the independence of their country. Moké paints the ambiance and the sentiments, Chéri Samba takes a critical look at the global events and Bodys Isek Kingelez imagines the future. While the political life keeps on going, their work spreads more in more internationally and is today part of great public and private collections, amongst which that of the MoMA in New-York that recently organized a retrospective exhibition of Bodys Isek Kingelez.
One exhibition, two galleries
In its Boulevard Richard Lenoir space, MAGNIN-A has chosen to bring together buildings by Bodys Isek Kingelez, historical paintings by Moké created between 1974 and 1986 and recent and unpublished works by Chéri Samba. The “Great painter Moké “, influenced by daily life, the agitation and noises of the city, develops a painting in which the people of Kinshasa find themselves. Chéri Samba’s painting ostentatiously describes the adventures of his life as an artist and his reflections on the world.
On the other side of the Seine, the Natalie Seroussi gallery focuses on the utopian and colourful buildings of Bodys Isek Kingelez. In his imaginary designs, Kingelez projects the image of a modern, prosperous and strong Africa. By using mostly recycled materials to construct his buildings, Kingelez reminds the Congolese people that they too can be masters of their dreams. Created between 1990 and the early 2000s, the sculptures presented by Natalie Seroussi are also being exhibited to the public for the first time.
Bodys Isek Kingelez is an artist born in 1948 in Kimbembele Ihunga, Democratic Republic of Congo. He started in 1985 to focus on his work as an artist who described himself as an “Architecture Maquettiste”. Kinshasa was then a large, chaotic, anarchic and increasingly dilapidated metropolis. Kingelez, witnessing the ravages of a politics that was not very concerned with the community, develops a work of architectural aspect that concentrates all the conditions of the development of his capital and his country: housing, education, justice, health, security. All his work, both poetic and political, questions the human condition.
After having made more than a hundred models from recycled materials, paper, cardboard, plastic where the Present, the Future and the hopes of an African renewal seem to coexist and take shape, he imagines from 1992 onwards whole cities. These “cities” are an assembly of models of buildings with unusual shapes, grandiose buildings, brightly coloured complexes that bring together all the functions of the ideal cities that the artist dreams of seeing built.
His main goal was ” to enable the new generation to create a new world, because the pleasures of our earthly world depend on the people who live in it. I created these cities so that peace, justice, and freedom could be sustained universally. They will function as small secular states with their own political structures, without the need for police or armies.”