Lisson Gallery

John Akomfrah to feature in Ghana’s first pavilion at Venice Biennale

25 February 2019

The Venice Biennale has announced the inclusion of the first national pavilion by Ghana in this year’s exhibition. Entitled Ghana Freedom, after the song composed by E.T. Mensah on the eve of the independence of the new nation in 1957, the pavilion examines the legacies and trajectories of that freedom through the work of six artists from three generations. Curated by historian Nana Ofosuaa Oforiatta Ayim and designed by renowned architect Sir David Adjaye, the presentation will celebrate work by six established and emerging Ghanaian artists including a three-channel video work by John Akomfrah, as well as works by Felicia Abban El Anatsui, Lynette Boakye-Yiadom, Ibrahim Mahama and Selasi Awusi Sosu.

Exploring the historical and cultural intersection of ideas linking the works of the six artists, Sir David Adjaye has designed an architecture that will showcase newly commissioned works and one historical body of work. Each artist will exhibit in an elliptically-shaped space which draws inspiration from the traditional earth houses built in the village of Sirigu in the Upper East Region of Ghana. The exhibition walls will be plastered with locally-sourced earth from the area, giving a sense of place and coherence as visitors move through the gallery spaces whilst offering a reflection of life in Ghana over the past century.

Ghana will present its first national pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale, from 11 May –24 November 2019. For more details visit: https://ghanainvenice.org/


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