02/10/2019

24.10–24.11.19 | Tales from the Equatorial Line

Blog / By ZAM Reporter

We are pleased to announce that we have entered into a partnership with the 6th Lubumbashi Biennale in the DRC.

An initiative by the Picha art centre, the Lubumbashi Biennale will bring together more than 50 artists from the DRC and elsewhere.

Lubumbashi Biennale Artistic Director Sandrine Colard

In artistic director’s statement, Sandrine Colard says the Biennale will explore the possibilities of repurposing the cartography of the world. “One of the seven African countries crossed by the Equator, the Congo claims the longest segment of the parallel on the continent. This places the region not only at the heart of Africa, but also at the bisecting line of the globe, at the zone of intersection between southern and northern hemispheres. By asserting this position, the Biennale repeals the modern fantasy of the Congo as an “irrelevant locale on the periphery of cultural history” to reclaim its profound entanglement with the world and its globally central position, both past and present,” says Colard. “The concept of the Biennale is to take the Equator’s imaginary line not as one of demarcation—the majestic Congo River disregards it by straddling it twice— but rather of imbrication.” This space of connection at the University of Lubumbashi will see a multitude of visual and performing arts, photography, film, lectures and debates for the duration of a month.

Gosette Lubondo, Imaginary trip II #3

This year’s Biennale is inspired by the Cameroonian philosopher Achille Mbembe’s notion of “décloisonnement” ("decompartmentalization," Ecrire l’Afrique-Monde, 2017. The upcoming artistic explosion pries open the equatorial line to collapse paradigms of centre and periphery, of  "North" versus "South." As unambiguously enunciated by Mbembe, “there is no part of the world whose history does not have some African dimension, just as there is an African history only as an integral part of the world’s history.”

This month, ZAM and the Lubumbashi Biennale have entered into a partnership. Our editorial team will share the artistic director’s statement, the list of participating artists, the opening week programme and more with ZAM’s international readership. We will also follow events closely on our social media pages.

Guy Woueté, Terre & Visage, 2015-17 ©GW15

The Lubumbashi Biennale’s website here.
Follow the Biennale’s Facebook page here.
The artistic director’s statement here.
The 50 Participating artists here.
The film programme here.
The opening week programme here.