The Gallery of African Art (GAFRA) is pleased to present an exhibition of contemporary paintings and photography from Mozambique, featuring works by Ilidio Candja Candja and Sergio Santimano. Mozambique: The Dialogue Continues considers the relationship that both of these artists have with their home country Mozambique, which marks 40 years of independence this year. While neither of the participating artists lives in Mozambique, their work still draws upon its origins, with the cultural richness borne of its diverse society.
After independence in 1975, Mozambique entered a new phase in contemporary art, with a shift from art of defiance to art which pays tribute to its past and salutes the present. All of these elements are evident in the themes, subject matter and style of works on display. Mozambique: The Dialogue Continues samples and celebrates some of the rich tapestry of artistic presentations found in the country.
In his paintings, Ilidio Candja Candja draws the audience into a personal exploration of his playful and dynamic energy. Executed in a style resonant with Abstract Expressionism and Action painting, his works are characterised by spontaneous and confident brush strokes. And inspired by his heritage, the riot of colours, personal symbols and African textile prints all serve to infuse his canvases with vibrancy.
Sergio Santimano portrays the daily lives of the average Mozambican through his brilliant photographs. Motivated by the ideas of transformation and shared experiences, his work explores both themes from the perspective of the observer, inviting the audience to position themselves in the spectacular landscape. Terra incógnita, a series of photos taken in Niassa, northern Mozambique, pays homage to his people. Each photograph draws on elements that are familiar to us all - earth, water, air and the beauty of the human spirit.