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Union Jacking. The voice of the voiceless

Union Jacking. The voice of the voiceless, at Cristina Guerra Gallery, Lisbon, till Oct. 12th. 2019

Yonamine was born in Angola in 1975. After growing up between Zaire (R.D.C.), Brazil and the United Kingdom, he now lives and works primarily in Harare, splitting the rest of his time between Luanda, Lisbon and Berlin.  His influences come from every corner of contemporary art and music spheres. Prolific and unexpected, Yonamine’s paintings, as much as his assemblages, collages, performances, graphics, moving images and assertive spoken words resonate with the contemporary world culture in a moment where “Post-colonial discussions have never been so often evoked by its Siamese twin: the colonizer”[1], as Okwui Enwesor said. As in post-colonial discussions where it is crucial to understand the history in order to follow, with Yonamine’s work it is essential to acknowledge the background issues informing his artistic practice to understand the contemporary discourse presented in each new exhibition.

In this fourth solo exhibition at Cristina Guerra Contemporary Art, Yonamine presents one installation “Xplicit Robbery” that occupies the entrance of the gallery space, a work that speaks about the “banality of power” in our time. Driven by “white supremacism” ideologies, the abuse of power has been dominant throughout the colonial period, including apartheid. Nowadays these practices continue and prevail against several individuals, including Mumia Abu-Jamal[2], still in jail.

[1]‘Inclusion/Exclusion: Art in the Age of Global Migration and Postcolonialism”, Okwui Enwezor, Frieze, n°33, 1997, cited in the introduction of Koyo Kouoh catalogue “Still (the) Barbarians”, EVA2016, Limerick, Ir.

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Images credit: Vasco Stocker Vilhena

Union Jacking. The voice of the voiceless

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