‘Kings of the New Cities’ of Kassou Seydou explores the duality between rural and urban life as an necessary way of development for African countries
Born in 1971 at Ziiguinchor (Senegal), Seydou Kassou studied at Dakar Fine Arts School from 1998 to 2001. He currently lives and works at Dakar and he is the laureate of WAPI Competition 2009, the Fine Arts section of the British Council. He currently presents “Kings of the New Cities” at Cecile Fakhoury Gallery at Abidjan until September 23, 2017.
For his first solo show in Côte d’Ivoire, the Senegalese artist Kassou Seydou chose to challenge us in a poetic way on the vision of the modern world by honoring the men of the shadows: the builders of these new cities, the « Kings of the New Cities « .
Through a series of 13 paintings, Kassou Seydou invites us to question the dysfunctions of the modern world through a strong symbolic manifestation, the representations of animals, the spirits, the fetishes and the many other references. The mystical and religious dimension has its source in the early childhood of the artist in Casamance. His attachment to the land and its origins is reflected in his work through a harmonious vision of society where nature and agriculture are at the center of all the process.
He is also interested in seeing man find himself at the center of all preoccupations and above all to see man find himself in harmony with his environment, with nature, with the land that is given to him, convinced that development of Africa will pass unconditionally through agriculture.
This exhibition highlights the relationship between man and his environment and his ancestors, but also the disproportionate development of the society engendering evils.
To conclude, « Kings of the New Cities » is meant to be a plea for the harmony of peoples within their environment and especially an invitation to Africans to focus themselves on developing their strengths rather than improving their weaknesses in order to develop their own ground: Africa.
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