Joana Choumali

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Joana Choumali

Born in 1974 in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Joana Choumali studied Graphic Arts in Casablanca (Morocco). Before starting her carrier as photographer, she worked as an Art Director for an advertising agency. Since 2000, she participated in numerous personal and group exhibitions on the African continent, in France and Great Britain. Her several times awarded series “Hââbré*, the last generation” (2013-14) was shown besides in Africa and Europe as well in the United States and Malaysia. The depicted scarification is an old African tradition. Once being a norm with high social status, it is nowadays vanishing, due to the shift of values in contemporary societies. In consequence, this series is a witness of former times.

Also dealing with the past and present is the series “Resilients” (2013-14), where Joana Choumali photographed African women in the traditional clothes of her female ancestors. Likewise, “Adorn” (2015) has a documentary character. Nevertheless, it is about the reinterpretation of European beauty standards by present-day black African women. The series was on view in the Pavilion of the Ivory Coast at the Venice Biennale 2017. Besides, the series “Translation” (2016-17) was presented. Here the artist questions about migration and its effects on the concerned societies and the enduring dream of African people to find a better life in the western world, despite obstacles like visa requirements. “Ouagadougou New York” is our artwork of the month of January 2018.

Joana’s recent series “ça va aller…” (it will be OK) (2016) was taken three weeks after the terrorist attacks in Grand Bassam (Ivory Coast) on the 13 March 2016. Bassam was for her always an area of peaceful retreat, with positive memory of childhood experience and family meetings, until the day of the raid. Even though, the events caused a deep sadness in the little town, these feelings were often shortened by the formula “ça va aller…”. In capturing the gloomy atmosphere and embroidering these images, the artist tried to heal mental wounds. “ça va aller…” was presented for the first time AKAA – Also Known As Africa 2017 in Paris, France.

In Joana’s photographical projects, the documentary meets art and vice versa. In addition, she lately introduced embroidery into the images. As attentive observer of her society, she picks up subjects of tradition and history as well as contemporary issues. Through these topics, she questions about collective and personal identity.

by Astrid Gallinat

www.joanachoumali.com

EXPOSITIONS

Oct 2000 Goethe Institute Abidjan, biannual festival “les Rencontres du Sud”, plastic serie “Birth”,

Sept 2011 “ Petite revue de l’art moderne et contemporain de Côte d’Ivoire ” An exhibition of contemporary Ivorian art organized by the Rotonde des Arts Gallery, documentary serie ‘Ces Invisibles’

Oct 2011 “Bicici, Amie des Arts” in Abidjan, documentary serie ‘Ces Invisibles’

Dec 2011 Eureka Gallery, Abidjan exhibition plastic serie « Nappy »

June 2012 “OFA 2012 Olympics of Arts” London Olympic games, Fine Arts serie “Nappy” London

Nov 2012 Slideshow “On the Roof “, National Museum Cinémathèque of Bamako biannual, Bamako Photography festival, documentary serie ‘Ces Invisibles’

June 2012  International school Jules Verne, documentary serie “Instants de vie” , Abidjan

Sept 2012 “Bicici, Amie des Arts” Abidjan, plastic serie ‘Akan’

May 2013 Photography Festival.” l’Emoi photographique”  plastic serie “Nappy”, Angoulême

October / Décember 2013 Private exhibition ASCOMA Company, plastic serie serie “Emotions à nu”, Abidjan

Apr / May 2014 Photography Festival.” l’Emoi photographique “Série plastique “Hââbré*,the last génération””, Hôtel Saint Simon Angoulême

Jun/Aug 2014  AAA2014 exhibition, Fondation Donwahi for the Contemporary Art- Abidjan.

 July/Sept 2014 : “Pour les noirs et pour les blancs” Exhibition,  Hierro des Villes Gallery, Nice, France, plastic serie “Emotions à nu”

Sept 2014 POPCAP’14 exhibition in Basel, Switzerland – Series “Hââbré*,the last génération”

Sept 2014 Documentary Photography Festival Barrobjectif – exhibition in Barro Charentes, France – Series “From Darkness to light”

Oct 2014  – POPCAP’14 exhibition in  Cape Town, South Africa “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

– POPCAP’14 exhibition LagosPhoto Festival in Lagos, Nigeria. “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

– Casablanca Biennale-  exhibition in  Casablanca, Morrocco  “Series « Emotions à Nu » / “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

– Exhibition of 50 Lensculture Emerging Talents- Galeria Valid Foto, Barcelona, “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

Nov 2014 – Exhibition “AGri-Cultures »  Abidjan – National Museum of Civilisations , Abidjan, Series “women in agriculture »

– POPCAP’14 exhibition, Eyes On – European Month of Photography. Vienna “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

– POPCAP’14 exhibition Festival Internacional de Fotografia de Cabo Verde. “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

– “Figuration “3×3” à Dakar par la Maison d’Aïssa Dione, la Galerie MAM et la Fondation Donwahi ,  Dakar – “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

Feb 2015 – Exhibition  LagosPhoto Festival at  “Grid Cape Town Biennial International Photography Festival “, Series “Hââbré*, the lastgeneration »

April 2015 – Exhibition  “Skin Deep” at The Troppenmuseum of World Cultures, Amsterdam –  Series “Hââbré*, the last  generation »

July 2015  – Exhibition “Design is the personality of an idea” Ford Foundation,  Lagos Series “Adorn”

August 2015  Casablanca Biennale At the French Institute of Valencia, Spain “Series « Emotions à Nu » / “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

August 2015   OBSCURA Festival Screening , Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

September 2015  – Photoquai Biennale 2015 “We are family” Quai Branly Museum, and  Eiffel Tower, Paris, Series “Hââbré*, the last  generation »

October 2015  – Lagos Photo Festival 2015 “Designing Future” Lagos, Eko Suite Hotel Nigeria, Series “Awoulaba/Taille Fine »

October 2015  – “Bold (Feminine)” Exhibition Marcia Wood Gallery Atlanta GA, Series “Résilientes »

November 2015  – Photolux Festival “Sacro e profano”Lucca, Italia, Series “Résilientes »

January 2016: Africa Contemporary @ LA Art Show, Los Angeles- “Hââbré, the last generation”

February 2016: Solo Exhibition – 50 Golborne Gallery- London- “Hââbré, the last generation”
March 2016 : “Find us on the map” Lagos photo Festival exhibition, Rush Gallery, New York, USA. series “Awoulaba /Taille fine”

May 2016 :  KOLGA TBILISI PHOTO FESTIVAL 2016 – Series “Hââbré*, the last  generation »

July 2016 :  LES RENCONTRES DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE d’ARLES 2016 – Series “Persona, the social mask »

August 2016 :  Festival Cinemas d’Afrique de Lausanne – Solo Show- Series “Haabre, the last generation »

September 2016 : Exhibition “Africa Forecast” Group show- Spelmann Museum -Atlanta ( series Resilientes and IG pictures)

October 2016 : – Land of African Business Conference – Cop 22 – Hotel de l’Industrie- Paris  (Series Resilients)

– Casablanca Biennale, “We the people”, Institut Francais de Casablanca ( Series Translation)

– Also Known As Africa Fair, 50Golborne Art and Design, Paris, series “Haabré, the last generation”

November 2016 – Group Exhibition “The Female Gaze»  Milan –  Series “Awoulaba Taille Fine »

February 2017 – Brught Young Things Exhibition -Art Africa Fair 2017

March 2017 – Lagos Photo Festival Exhibition ” Where Future beats”  Milan –  Series “Resilients

May 2017 – Venice Biennale 2017  Venice –  Series “Adorn » and ” Translation”

June 2017 : Exhibition “The Elusive Body”  Festival Image Afrique , Basel , Series “Awoulaba Taille Fine »

June 2017 : Exhibition “Le Havre -Dakar”, Musée d’Histoire naturelle,  LeHavre, Series “Adorn »

June 2017 : Exhibition “A fleur de peau”, Abbaye de Daoulas, Brest, “Series “Hââbré*, the last generation »

July 2017 : Festival International de Photographie pour les femmes photographes  -St gilles Croix de Vie, France “Series “Résilientes »

September 2017 : Monopoli Photo Festival, Monopoli, Italy (PHEst 17)  “Series “Awoulaba/Taille Fine »

October 2017 : solo  Show “BITTER ” à Beurs Van Berlage , Amsterdam “Serie “Bitter, Chocolate Stories »

November 2017 : Also Known As Africa  (AKAA FAIR)  Paris “Series “ça va aller»

Novembre 2017: Lagos Photo Festival , Nigeria “Series “Translation »

 

Décember 2017 : Afrotopia, Biennale internationale de la Photographie Africaine de Bamako 2017 “Series “ça va aller»

Janvier 2018 : Afriques Artistes d’hier et d’aujourdhui Fondation Clément et Fondation Dapper, Martinique “Series “Nappy” et “Persona”

February 2018 : “Africa is no Island”,Opening exhibition of the Musuem of African Contemporary Art Al maaden, Marrackech ( MACAAL) series “HAABRE THE LAST GENERATION”

February 2018 : 1:54 CONTEMPORARY ART ART FAIR, Marrackech “Series “Résilientes »

February 2018 : Black History exhibition , Florence series Persona”

 

Awards

– Winner of  POPCAP’14 Piclet.org Prize Africa 2014– “Hââbré, the last generation”

LensCulture Emerging Talents Awards 2014 Winner – “Hââbré, the last generation”
– Fourthwall books Award 2016. Winner”Hââbré, the last generation”( Ongoig project of Publication of “Haabre The Last generation in a photobook)
– 2016 Magnum Foundation Emergency Fund Grant –  Winner- Series “Sissi Barra”

ART RESIDENCIES

june 2015 :  Ifitry contemporary art center,  Essaouira Morocco

February 2016:  Ifirty contemporary art center,  Essaouira Morocco

September 2017 : Nirox Foundation, Johannesburg, South Africa

 

COLLABORATIONS/ PHOTOGRAPHY ASSIGNMENTS :

– Le Monde Afrique

– Forbes Afrique Magazine

– The Africa Report

Italian Vanity Fair,

Paradox Editions/ Tony’s Chocolonely ,

New York Times Lens Blog

GALERIES

REPRESENTÉE PAR 50 GOLBORNE GALLERY À LONDRES

REPRESENTÉE PAR GALERIE LE LOFT À CASABLANCA

PLATFORMS

JURY MEMBER OF THE WORLD PRESS PHOTO CONTEST 2018 , Category People

MEMBER OF AFRICAN PHOTOJOURNALISM DATABASE (APJD)

MEMBER OF EVERYDAY AFRICA (@EVERYDAYAFRICA

BOOKS :

2016 : HAABRE THE LAST GENERATION,  Fourthwall Books Editions

2017 : « BITTER Chocolate Stories », Paradox Editions, The Netherlands

HOBBIES

Lecture,

Cinéma

Musique

Natation

Jardinage bio