Traveling Exhibition: Urban Cadence: Street Scenes from Lagos and Johannesburg

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Urban Cadence tells the multifaceted stories of two urban environments—Lagos, Nigeria and Johannesburg, South Africa—experienced through the artistic expressions of over sixty photographs and videos by nine award-winning and internationally recognized contemporary African artists. African cities are the fastest growing in the world, and these two cities have experienced this growth in diverse yet fascinating ways: the first as a megacity, the latter as a center of industrial development. The street scenes in this exhibition represent the complex narratives of these urban sites: tales of migration, labor, desperation, success, hope, and imagination among others. Here, these stories are woven together through the metaphor of cadence, which speaks to the rhythms of life. Cadence is the gait of the artist and inhabitants of the city as they move through urban spaces. It is avisual rhythm an artist creates when telling the city’s myriad stories. At the same time, it is a musical metaphor that artists draw on to speak about their images or their photographic practice. Whether sobering, humorous, or unexpected, the visuals of Urban Cadence challenge us to explore what it means to be urban in Africa in the early 21st century.
Full exhibition prospectus attached. 

Images from top to bottom:
– Akintunde Akinleye (Nigerian, b. 1971) Each Passing Day, 2006. Digital print. Courtesy of the artist.
– To the left: Gallery talk featuring Nigerian photographer Uche Okpa-Iroha. Image courtesy of the Gund Gallery, Kenyon College.
– To the right: Jodi Bieber (South African, b. 1966) Alternative rock band Ree-Burth, Pimville, 2009. Digital print. Courtesy of the artist.
– Installation view, Urban Cadence: Street Scenes from Lagos and Johannesburg, Gund Gallery, Kenyon College. Photo credit: Alan Geho.

Categories: Traveling Exhibitions