Sammy Baloji, ‘Raccord #5, Mine à ciel ouvert noyée de Banfora from the series: Kolwezi’, 2011, Axis Gallery
Sammy Baloji, ‘Raccord #5, Mine à ciel ouvert noyée de Banfora from the series: Kolwezi’, 2011, Axis Gallery

Series: Kolwezi

Signature: Certificate of authenticity with artist signature

Image rights: Copyright the artist and Axis Gallery

Sammy Baloji: Mémoire/Kolwezi (Africalia) 2014
Essay by Achille Mbembe

On request

About Sammy Baloji

Sammy Baloji’s artistic concern is rooted in the daily life of Congolege people, and he uses photography to explore his country’s present and to retell its history from the perspective of its people. “Ethnography, architecture, and urbanism [are] among my current focuses,” he has written. “My reading of the Congolese past is a way of analyzing African identity today, through all the political systems that the society has experienced.” He often combines archival photographs with his own shots of the people and places bearing the marks of colonialism. In his “Mémoire” series (2006), for example, he focuses on the former mining town of Lubumbashi. By superimposing photographs of the people who worked and ran the mines over his own images of these now disused structures, he reveals the ongoing ramifications of the past.

Congolese, b. 1978, Democratic Republic of Congo, based in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Brussels, Belgium