Africa State of Mind

Date: Saturday, Dec 14 2019 - Sunday, Mar 1 2020
Venue: Royal West of England Academy

Exhibition exploring the work of an emergent generation of photographers from across the African continent.

Artists from ten different countries interrogate ideas of ‘Africanness’ through highly subjective renderings of life and identity on the continent, along the way revealing Africa to be a psychological space as much as a physical territory; a state of mind as much as a physical location.

The exhibition orientates around three main themes: Inner Landscapes, Zones of Freedom and Hybrid Cities. The modern African city is documented in all its dynamism and contradiction. The fluidity of gender and sexual identity is addressed through compelling portraiture, and the legacy of history, from slavery and colonialism to apartheid, becomes the source of resonant new myths and dreamscapes.

Africa State of Mind takes place at a time in which popular Western views of the continent still remain limited. By contrast, Africa State of Mind features photography that seeks to address the complexity of what it means, and how it feels, to live in Africa today.

Exhibited artists: Emmanuelle Andrianjafy, Sammy Baloji, Raphael Barontini, Neil Beloufa, Girma Berta, Eric Gyamfi, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Lebohang Kganye, Namsa Leuba, Michael MacGarry, Sabelo Mlangeni, Musa N Nxumalo, Ruth Ossai, Athi-Patra Ruga, Michael Tsegaye.

Pictured: Athi-Patra Ruga, Night of the Long Knives I, 2013. Photographer: Hayden Phipps.

Dec 14-March 1, RWA, Tue-Sat 10am-5.30pm
/ Sun 11am-5pm (closed Dec 24-26 and Dec 30-Jan 1), £6.95. For more info, visit

By steve wright, Thursday, Nov 21 2019

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