From July 11th 2015 to January 10th 2016.

A place of extraordinary cultural vitality, the Democratic Republic of the Congo will be honored in the exhibition Beauté Congo -1926-2015- Congo Kitoko presented at the Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain with André Magnin, Chief Curator.

Modern painting in the Congo in the 1920s
Taking as its point of departure the birth of modern painting in the Congo in the 1920s, this ambitious exhibition will trace almost a century of the country's artistic production. While specifically focusing on painting, it will also include music, sculpture, photography, and comics, providing the public with the unique opportunity to discover the diverse and vibrant art scene of the region.

Precursors
As early as the mid-1920s, when the Congo was still a Belgian colony, precursors such as Albert and Antoinette Lubaki and Djilatendo painted the first known Congolese works on paper, anticipating the development of modern and contemporary art. Figurative or geometric in style, their works represent village life, the natural world, dreams and legends with great poetry and imagination. Following World War II, the French painter Pierre Romain-Desfossés moved to the Congo and founded an art workshop called the Atelier du Hangar. In this workshop, active until the death of Desfossés in 1954, painters such as Bela Sara, Mwenze Kibwanga and
Pili Pili Mulongoy learned to freely exercize their imaginations, creating colorful and enchanting works in their own highly inventive and distinctive styles.

Popular painters
Twenty years later, the exhibition Art Partout, presented in Kinshasa in 1978, revealed to the public the painters Chéri Samba, Chéri Chérin, and Moke and other artists, many of whom are still active today. Fascinated by their urban environment and collective memory, they would call themselves "popular painters". They developed a new approach to figurative painting, inspired by daily, political or social events that were easily recognizable by their fellow citizens. Papa Mfumu'Eto, known for his independent prolific comic book production and distribution throughout Kinshasa in the 1990s, also explored daily life and common struggles throughout his work. Today younger artists like J.-P. Mika and Monsengo Shula, tuned-in to current events on a global scale, carry on the approach of their elders.

In the 1980s
Beginning in the 1980s and continuing through to the present, innovative sculptors like Bodys Isek Kingelez and Rigobert Nimi have created intricate architectural models of utopian cities or robotized factories to explore the question of social cohesion. For them, art provokes self-renewal that in turn contributes towards a better collective future.

In the 2000s
Reflecting a new generation of artists, the members of the collective Eza Possibles, created in 2003, have refused the narrow confines of the Académie des Beaux-
Arts of Kinshasa. Two of its founding painters, Pathy Tshindele and Kura Shomali reaffirm the vitality of the contemporary scene with their unconventional collages and paintings, and critical approach to art.

The photography
Depicting the energy in the city Kinshasa following the independence of the Congo, the work of photographers such as Jean Depara and Studio 3Z will also be presented in the exhibition. The designated photographer of the musician Franco, Jean Depara portrayed the lively and extravagant night life of Kins the 1950s and 1960s. Recording the world of Sape (The Society of Ambiancemakers and Elegant People) and body-builders, Ambroise Ngaimoko, from the Studio 3Z photographed the attitudes and ardor of the youth of Kinshasa in the 1970s.

The music
Jazz, soul, rap, and popular dance music Music, omnipresent in city life in the Congo, has actively contributed to this vibrancy. The Congolese music industry blossomed during the golden age of rumba beginning in the 1950s. While it has since been highly influential in Sub-Saharan Africa, this urban music is largely unknown outside the continent. This important facet of the country's creative spirit, including jazz, soul, rap, and popular dance music, will be heard at key moments in the exhibition, in conversation with specific artworks. Visitors will be invited to listen to songs by the smooth Tabu Ley Rochereau, the great Franco and his group OK Jazz, the soulful Mbilia Bel, the sapeur Papa Wemba, and the eclectic Trio Madjesi, amongst others, carefully selected by Vincent Kenis of Crammed Discs in collaboration with Césarine Bolya. The duo will also present their never-before-seen documentary entitled Ndule Ya Kala, a series of spontaneous interviews of people who participated directly or indirectly in Kinshasa's 1960s music scene.

Fondation Cartier's commitment to contemporary art
Upholding the Fondation Cartier's commitment to African contemporary art, Beauté Congo - 1926-2015 - Congo Kitoko follows a series of other projects held at the Fondation featuring Congolese artists including the solo shows Bodys Isek Kingelez (1999) and J'aime Chéri Samba (2004) and the thematic exhibitions Un Art Populaire (2001) and Histoires de voir, Show and Tell (2012).


First picture of the slide show : Cartier Foundation_© Luc Boegly.
Exhibition views: © © Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain.


To know more about the exhibition

Practical information

Download: Press kit


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Pathy Tshindele

Press

Beauté Congo : l'art congolais, une créativité unique en Afrique

RFI

-

By Siegfried Forster

-
18.07.2015

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Steve Bandoma,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Kiripi Katembo,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Albert Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Monsengo Shula

Press

Auf der wahren Karte der Welt liegt Europa unten

Die Welt

-

By Von Johannes Wetzel

-
17.07.2015

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Ambroise Ngayimoko

Press

Kinois, etc.

Les Inrockuptibles
-
15.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

JP Mika,

Monsengo Shula

Press

Chéri Samba : « l'exposition Beauté Congo va changer quelque chose ».

RFI

-

By Siegfried Forster

-
14.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke

Press

André Magnin :

RFI Afrique

-

By Tirthankar Chanda

-
13.07.2015

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Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Ambroise Ngayimoko,

Kura Shomali ,

Monsengo Shula,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

L'art contemporain en Afrique. Voyez Beauté Congo (1926-2015), à la Fondation Cartier

Evous

-

By André Balbo

-
13.07.2015

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Steve Bandoma,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Ambroise Ngayimoko

Press

Beauté Congo : le dynamisme de l'art congolais

TV5 Monde

-

By Amélie Revert

-
12.07.2015

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Steve Bandoma,

Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Albert Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

La vitalité des artistes du Congo embrase la Fondation Cartier

Quotidien de l'art

-

By Roxana Azimi

-
11.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Albert Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Monsengo Shula

Press

Congolese Art in Full Color

The Wall Street Journal

-

By Tobias Grey

-
10.07.2015

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Pierre Bodo,

Chéri Samba,

Kiripi Katembo,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki,

JP Mika

Press

Paris hosts first ever retrospective of art from Democratic Republique of Congo

The Guardian

-

By Hannah Ellis Peterson

-
10.07.2015

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Steve Bandoma,

Chéri Samba,

Jean Depara,

Kiripi Katembo,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

JP Mika

Press

Expo Congo à gogo

Madame Figaro
-
10.07.2015

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Steve Bandoma,

Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Jean Depara,

Kiripi Katembo,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Monsengo Shula

Press

On se laisse emporter par

ELLE

-

By Caroline Six

-
10.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki

Press

Entretien André Magnin à propos de l'exposition Beauté Congo :

Le Monde

-

By Roxana Azimi

-
10.07.2015

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Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Kiripi Katembo,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Kura Shomali ,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

Afrique-Art contemporain : passion Congo

Le Point Afrique

-

By Valérie Marin la Meslée

-
09.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Albert Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke

Press

Beauté Congo : l'exposition qui restitue l'énergie débridée de Kinsasha

Le Monde Afrique

-

By Roxana Azimi

-
09.07.2015

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Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Jean Depara,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Kura Shomali ,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

Passion Congo

Le Point

-

By Valérie Marin La Meslée

-
09.07.2015

Download: Pdf

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Albert Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

De Kinshasa au MoMA, retour sur un siècle de peinture congolaise

Télérama

-

By Frédérique Chapuis

-
09.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Albert Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

Un siècle haut en couleurs

Télérama

-

By Frédéric Chapuis

-
08.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki

Press

A. Magnin : partager 30 ans de Congo

Africultures

-

By Anne Bocandé

-
08.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki,

Moke,

Kura Shomali ,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

Congo moderne, Congo contemporain à la Fondation Cartier

Connaissance des arts

-

By Myriam Boutoulle

-
01.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

JP Mika

Press

Un été à Paris _ Beau Congo

Paris Mômes
-
01.07.2015

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Chéri Samba,

JP Mika

Press

Beauté Congo 1926-2015, Congo Kitoko

Chocolate
-
01.07.2015

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JP Mika

Press

Ninety years of Congolese Modernism

The Art Newspaper

-

By Pac Pobric

-
01.07.2015

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Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Ambroise Ngayimoko

Press

Beauté Congo 1925-2015

Le Vif
-
19.06.2015

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Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Chéri Chérin,

Jean Depara,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki,

JP Mika,

Moke,

Ambroise Ngayimoko,

Kura Shomali ,

Monsengo Shula,

Pathy Tshindele

Press

Beauté Congo

The Wall Street International Online
-
18.06.2015

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Bela,

Chéri Samba,

Jean Depara,

Bodys Isek Kingelez,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki

Press

Kinshasa, le grand atelier

Art Passions

-

By Bérénice Geoffroy Schneiter

-
01.06.2015

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Chéri Samba,

Albert Lubaki,

Antoinette Lubaki

Press

La juste réhabilitation de l'artiste africain

L'oeil

-

By Bérénice Geoffroy Schneiter

-
01.06.2015

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