Rencontres de Bamako 2019

12th edition – African Biennial of Photography celebrating 25 years

Affiche officielle des Rencontres de Bamako 2019. 25 ans de photographies. 12e édition. 2019 © Les Rencontres de Bamako
Official poster of Rencontres de Bamako 2019. 25 years of photography. 12th edition. 2019 © Rencontres de Bamako

This 12th edition of the African Bienniale of Photography, created in 1994, marks the celebration of its 25th anniversary. They will be held in Bamako, from 30 November 2019 to 31 January 2020. Organized by the Ministry of Culture of Mali with the support of the French Institute, Rencontres de Bamako is the main event dedicated to contemporary photography and new images in Africa. On an international scale, Rencontres de Bamako (Bamako Encounters) are a platform for discovery, exchange and visibility, they are an essential place for African photographers to reveal themselves, a time for exchange with the Malian public and professionals from all over the world.

“Streams of Consciousness”: Theme of the 12th edition of the African Biennial of Photography

The pan-African exhibition, at the heart of the event, is the result of a selection of African photographers and videographers. It is in the framework of the general theme “Streams of Consciousness” and will bring together African artists from the continent and its diasporas. Streams of Consciousness refers to the first track of Abdullah Ibrahim and Max Roache’s eponymous album, Streams of Consciousness (1977). Like a soul to soul conversation, this piece recalls what William James called in his book The Principles of Psychology (1890), a person’s continuous stream of consciousness and conscious reactions to events.

By choosing this theme, it is a question of thinking of the work as an expression of an inner monologue, as a dialogue between artists, from artist to spectator or as the artist’s sensory reactions to external events. It is therefore a question of reflecting on the notion of representation from the artist’s point of view, which is expressed through a current of artistic thought. The aim is to “think in pictures”. The photographic work is conceived as the result of the conceptual and aesthetic associations of its author. The works selected for the pan-African exhibition will be those that explore through photographic practice this notion of “Streams of consciousness” as it is conceptualised in psychology and literature.

Directeur artistique Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, commissaire d’exposition indépendant et fondateur de SAVVY Contemporary (Berlin, Allemagne) © Les Rencontres de Bamako
Artistic Director Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, independent curator and founder of SAVVY Contemporary (Berlin, Germany) © Rencontres de Bamako

The focus will also be on the notion of dialogue between the continent and its diasporas, including the bridges that compose and animate the African universe. Africa has long ceased to be a geographical concept limited to its geographical space. Through the dynamics of photography, it is a question of giving rise to streams of consciousness that are born from and beyond the coasts of the African continent.

(Further information : Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung)


Co-commissaires de la 12e édition de la biennale de photographie africaine. De gauche à droite Aziza Harmel, Astrid Lepoultier et Kwasi Ohene-Ayeh
Co-Curators of the 12th edition of the Biennial of African Photography

The 12th edition of Rencontres de Bamako – African Biennial of Photography will have as Artistic Director Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, independent curator and founder of SAVVY Contemporary (Berlin, Germany), and co- curators Aziza Harmel, Astrid Sokona Lepoultier and Kwasi Ohene-Ayeh. Photographers Akinbode Akinbiyi and Seydou Camera will be the artistic advisors.

Individual artists

  • Ibrahim Ahmed (Egypt/USA),
  • Nirveda Alleck (Mauritius Island),
  • Emmanuelle Andrianjafy (Madagascar),
  • Roger Anis (Egypt),
  • Yannick Anton (Canada),
  • Afrane Akwasi Bediako (Ghana),
  • Jean-Pierre Bekolo (Cameroon),
  • Jodi Bieber (South Africa),
  • Milena Scherezade Carranza Valcárcel (Peru),
  • Cédrick-Isham (France),
  • Nidhal Chamekh (Tunisia),
  • Amsatou Diallo (Mali),
  • Moustapha Diallo (Mali),
  • Dickonet (Mali),
  • Adji Fatou Amdy Dieye (Italy/Senegal),
  • Fakhri El Ghezal (Tunisia),
  • Badr El Hammami (Morocco),
  • Yagazie Emezi (Nigeria),
  • Theo Eshetu (Ethiopia/Italy/ Netherlands/ UK),
  • Fototala King Massassy (Mali),
  • Abrie Fourie (South Africa),
  • Rahima Gambo (Nigeria),
  • Eric Gyamfi (Ghana),
  • Yasmina Hajji (France),
  • Halima Haruna (Nigeria),
  • Fanyana Hlabangane (South Africa),
  • Renée Holleman (South Africa),
  • Adama Jalloh (UK/Sierra Leone),
  • Maxime Jean-Baptiste (France),
  • Amina Ayman Kadous (Egypt),
  • Mansour Ciss Kanakassy (Senegal),
  • Mouna Karray (Tunisia),
  • Godelive Kabena Kasangati (DR Congo),
  • Bouchra Khalili (France/Morocco),
  • Nicène Kossentini (Tunisia),
  • Kitso Lynn Lelliott (Botswana/South Africa),
  • Keli Safia Maksud (Kenya/Tanzania),
  • Harun Morrison & Helen Walker (UK),
  • Santiago Mostyn (Sweden/Trinidad/Zimbabwe),
  • Khalil Nemmaoui (Morocco),
  • Yvon Ngassam (Cameroon),
  • Antoine Ngolke-do’o (Cameroon),
  • Christian Nyampeta (The Netherlands/Rwanda),
  • Abraham Oghobase (Nigeria),
  • Adeola Olagunju (Nigeria),
  • Léonard Pongo (Belgium),
  • Nader Mohamed Saadallah (Egypt),
  • Amadou Diadié Samassékou (Mali),
  • Mara Sanchez Renero (Mexico),
  • Ketaki Sheth (India),
  • Buhlebezwe Siwani (South Africa),
  • Selasi Awusi Sosu (Ghana),
  • Mohamed Thara (Morocco),
  • Dustine Thierry (Curaçao/The Netherlands),
  • Boubakary Touré (France/Mali),
  • Hamdia Traoré (Mali),
  • Andrew Tshabangu (South Africa),
  • Guy Woueté (Cameroon)


  • Association des Femmes Photographes du Mali (AFPM) (Mali)
  • Collectif Orchestre vide (France)
  • Collective 220 (Algeria)
  • Iliso Labantu Photography Collective (Afrique du Sud)
  • Invisible Borders (Trans-Africa)
  • Kamoinge (USA/Pan-Africa)
  • Kolektif 2 Dimansyon (K2D) (Haiti)
  • MFON: Women Photographers from the African Diaspora (Pan-Africa)
  • The Otholith Group (Ghana/India/UK)

Special projects

  • Felicia Abban (Ghana)
  • Akinbode Akinbiyi (Nigeria)
  • Jihan El Tahri (Egypt)
  • Armet Francis (Jamaica)
  • Theaster Gates (USA)  
  • Liz Johnson Artur (UK)
  • Deborah Lewis (USA)
  • Eustaquio Neves (Brazil)

Thematic exhibitions

  • “Musow Ka Touma Sera” a group exhibition with women artists, organized by Fatima Bocoum, (Mali)
  • “Dja Tigui: The host of My Shadow”, curated by Nakhana Diakite Prats (France/Senegal)
  • “The Works of Tolu Odukoya 1945-2015”, curated by Uche James Iroha (Nigeria)
  • “Legends of the Kasbah”, curated by Riason Naidoo (South Africa)
  • “East of Bamako”, curated by Françoise Huguier (France)
  • “Five photographers: A tribute to David Goldblatt”, curated by John Fleetwood (South Africa)
12th edition of Rencontres de Bamako – Bamako Encounters
African Biennial of Photography
From November 30, 2019 to January 31, 2020
Bamako, Mali

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