Lines, Motion and Ritual

Curated by Awam Amkpa

Olu Amoda • Omar Victor Diop • Victor Ehikhamenor • Angele Essamba • Taiye Idahor • Maïmouna Guerresi • Bartelemy Toguo • Lina Viktor • Deb Willis

July 12 – August 18, 2017

For immediate release


Lines, Motions and Ritual

Curated by Awam Amkpa

July 12 – August 18, 2017


Magnan Metz Gallery is pleased to present Lines, Motions and Rituals - a group exhibition of nine contemporary artists Olu Amoda, Omar Victor Diop, Victor Ehikhamenor, Angele Essamba, Taiye Idahor, Maïmouna Guerresi, Bartelemy Toguo, Lina Viktor and Deb Willis, curated by Awam Amkpa. The exhibition will be on view from July 12 – August 18 with an opening reception Tuesday, July 11th 6-8pm


The artists in this exhibition use lines, motions and emotions to highlight the ways in which structures, patterns and rhythm function as modes of communication and socialization. Their work codifies these artistic processes to produce communities and rituals of identification. These creative productions introduce us to the history and conventions of art making within African and African Diasporic communities. Moreover, the artists blaze their own innovative trails by fashioning these diasporic conventions into art for contemporary audiences.


For all the artists, Africa, both as a geographical place and as a font of diaspora, has long served as an energizing if contentious context for producing, mediating, and sustaining art and art making. Their paintings, photography, sculptures, dance, and collages encourage meditation and conversations around the purpose of artistic methods, style, and reception as approaches to belonging.  Together, they inscribe and frame a capacious Africa as subject of art-making all over the Atlantic world.


This multidisciplinary exhibition represents a small selection of artists from two exhibitions: ReSignifications in Florence, Italy and Signifaciones in Havana, Cuba.  Olu Amoda is a Nigerian sculptor, muralist, furniture designer, and multi-media artist whose iconic work uses repurposed materials and metal to expresses modern African sensibility. He is Founder and Chief Executive of Riverside Art and Design Studios in Yaba, Lagos.  Omar Victor Diop is a Senegalese artist working in photography and design as a means to capture the diversity of modern African societies and lifestyles.​ Victor Ehighale Ehihkamenor is a Nigerian visual artist, writer, and photographer.  He draws inspiration from the dual aesthetic and spiritual traditions of African motifs and religious cosmology as well as Western beliefs, memories and nostalgia. He is representing Nigeria in their first ever Venice Biennale Pavilion.  Angèle Etoundi Essamba is a Cameroonian photographer living and working in Amsterdam, she is known for her photography work in black and white that often focuses on the African female as a subject matter.  Taiye Idahor uses hair as a visual language to address issues of trade, beauty, the environment and globalization. She examines how these factors build women’s identity in today’s Africa - particularly Lagos, Nigeria where she lives. Maïmouna Guerresi’s artwork is a hybrid of spirituality and ancestry of Africa, Asia and Europe culture, a reflection of her embrace of the globalization in art and life.  Her images are delicate narratives with fluid sequencing, an appreciation of shared humanity beyond border – psychological, cultural and political.  Barthélémy Toguo, is a Cameroonian painter, visual and performance artist working in photography, prints sculpture and video.  He lives in Paris and Bandjoun.  Lina Vikor merges multi-media and the ancient practice of 24-karat gold gilding to create dark canvases embedded with “layers of light”. Her work addresses the socio-political and historical preconceptions surrounding ‘blackness’ and its universal implications. Deb Willis is a contemporary African-American artist, photographer, curator of photography, photographic historian, author, and educator. Among other awards and honors she has received, she was a 2000 MacArthur Fellow.


Awam Amkpa is a Professor of Drama and of Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University.  He is a curator of photographic and art exhibitions, film festivals, playwright, director and filmmaker. Author of Theatre and Postcolonial Desires and ReSignifications, Amkpa has written several articles on representations in Africa and its Diasporas, representations, and modernisms in theatre, postcolonial theatre, and Black Atlantic films.


For additional information, please contact                   Gallery hours: Monday – Friday, 10am-6pm