Grand Palais Éphémère, 21 - 24 October 2021

MAGNIN-A gallery is pleased to announce its participation in the FIAC which will be held from October 21 to 24 at the Grand Palais Éphémère. Between utopias and dystopias, the works of Congolese artists Hilary Balu, Bodys Isek Kingelez and JP Mika will dialogue on this occasion to dream of a better world, with its hopes and contradictions.

In view of the "difficulties and miseries of life", to use JP Mika's expression, utopia is offered to these artists as an escape, as an answer to the happiness of a better future. JP Mika's flowery canvases are the expression of pure joy, emanating from the positive, soft and tender energy of contemporary Africa. The happiness of being and living are found in the colors as well as in the figure of the sapeur, mystical incarnation of an animated Kinshasa.

Utopia is also the place of what does not exist... or not yet. The construction of a dream in the making like the fantasized architectures of Bodys Isek Kingelez. "I would like my art to enable the new generation to create a new world, because the pleasures of our earthly world depend on the people who live in it. I have created these cities so that peace, justice and freedom can be maintained universally. They would function as small secular states with their own political structures, without the need for a police force or an army.

Between fantasy and reality, artist Hilary Balu warns of the dangers of an idealized elsewhere. In his latest series "In the Floods of Illusions", inspired by the seascapes of 18th and 19th century European artists, he depicts the history of the Kingdom of Kongo and the impact of triangular trade on contemporary Congolese society. He also evokes the tragedy of migrants drowning in the hopes and illusions of the Western dream. The seas, the oceans, the ports are these promises that carry away a part of the African youth in deadly waves.