You Love Me, You Love Me Not | Municipal Gallery Almeida Garrett (Porto, Portugal)
You Love Me, You Love Me Not is an exhibit featuring a collection of works from the Sindika Dokolo Collection of Contemporary Art. An avid art collector and businessman Sindika Dokolo began collecting art at the age of fifteen and, since then, has amassed one of the largest and most important collections of Contemporary African art in the world.
Taken from the title for a diptych painted by Wangechi Mutu, You Love Me, You Love Me Not is a title chosen to represent art about a continent in conflict. The artists tell conflicting stories about Africa — an overarching tale about generations of political turmoil, as well as a story about an intimate love for Africa as a whole.
The exhibit consists of 100 paintings, sculptures, photographs, and videos by 50 different artists. Many of the represented artists no longer call Africa home, but they all use elements of Africa to contribute to the global aesthetic.
Sindika Dokolo once stated that the trajectory of African art is a complicated debate that is best nourished by the artists themselves. This exhibit features artists that address three of the largest questions in the discussion about Contemporary art.
Where did we come from? Several works address this question by depicting social realities. Photographs by Seydou Keita capture moments in the history of Mali, while self portraits in costume by Samuel Fosso depict a caricatured commentary on African history. As a physically disabled artist, Yinka Shonibare’s uses costume and spectacle inThe Diary of a Victorian Dandy to represent the history of the outsider.
What are our values? Video works such as Felix in Exile by William Kentridge depicts a strong society recovering from apartheid. Kara Walker uses her trade mark paper cutouts to address the issues of recovering from slavery. While Ghada Amer addresses sexuality and issues associated with gender.
Where is art going? The answer to this is addressed by more revolutionary mediums such as Nick Cave’s sound suits, wearable fabric sculptures. As well as video and installation pieces by Nastio Mosquito, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Loulou Cherinet. Experimental themes and media allow for art to go as far as these artists are ready to push it.
Curated by Suzana Sousa and Bruno Leitão in collaboration with the Sindika Dokolo Foundation and the municipality of Porto, You Love Me, You Love Me Not will be exhibited until May 17 2015 at the Municipal Gallery Almeida Garrett in Porto, Portugal.