Earth Matters: Land as Material and Metaphor in the Arts of Africa
Bowdoin College Museum of Art
October 15, 2015 – March 6, 2016
Shaw Ruddock Gallery
Offering a panoramic view of the arts of Africa, the major exhibition Earth Matters brings together approximately sixty exceptional works of art from the nineteenth century to the present. The exhibition focuses on the creative and visual ways in which individuals and communities negotiate relationships with their surrounding land and the world at large. The featured artworks the period from the arrival of colonial interests to the present day, exploring how profound and changing concepts of healing, the sacred, identity, memory, history, and sustainability have been formed in relation to the land. With its emphasis on uncompromising artistic vision, the exhibition links diverse media, including photography, painting, mixed-media assemblage, and time-based media, to reveal how artists have related to the land. Earth Matters features rare artistic treasures from the past, alongside works by internationally renowned and emerging talents from across the continent, including William Kentridge, George Osodi, Sammy Baloji, and Helga Kohl. The National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, organized this exhibition.
“De money series no. 1,” 2009, by George Osodi, born 1974, Nigeria, Fuji crystal archival National Museum of African Art “Once a blue world,” 2009 Okereke, born Nigeria. Color photograph. From the series: “The canal people.”
“Untitled” from the series “World Under Pressure,” 2011, Aluminum object, by Batoul S’himi, born Morocco.