Who is behind the masks? This is the question that Kendell Geers, 53, the artist from a working-class Afrikaans family at the height of apartheid, an uncompromising activist in the face of ideological diktats, asks us. The pandemic that forced us to wear masks inspired this colossus who expresses his ideas loud and clear and models his sculptures body to body. His gallery of revisited heads from the ancient Dogon masks of Mali or the Kota reliquaries of Gabon emanates an incredible strength. All bear the marks of life given voluntarily by him with the traces of his hands, denting their chins, the elbows forming their eyes. The messages are heavy with meaning coming from this African artist who grew up in Africa and has always felt, as he claims, close to his continent, beyond a border between classical African art and contemporary art manufactured by the market. Spirituality is at the heart of his painted and sculpted works that are infinitely reflected on a mirrored floor. But also in his simple sets of letters (such as "believe") printed on the wallpaper that serves as their setting and pointing to the of what we want to believe.
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