, Knokke-Heist, Belgium
30 Mar 2014 - 09 Jun 2014
From March up to June 2014, Knokke-Heist will once again focus on contemporary photography. The highlight of the festival is the outdoor exhibition, entitled “Haute Africa”, in which international leading artists and photographers such as Martin Parr, Wangechi Mutu, Zanele Muholi, Viviane Sassen, Yinka Shonibare and many others offer an alternative perspective on the contemporary African continent.
“Haute Africa” focuses on the work of photographers who are not interested in African fashion per se but who choose instead to conduct an anthropological study of contemporary African clothing culture. With their fine sense for the various developments in society, they reflect on the various social, political and economic issues that fashion expresses.
Several African countries, including Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania and Zambia have a flourishing economy. South Africa’s economy is the largest in Africa, making it a major global player. These countries primarily owe their progress to the exploitation of the minerals in Africa’s rich soil, but creative and sustainable economies are also seeing growth.
The fashion industry is a good example of such a creative industry. Many African designers, entrepreneurs and photographers inspire the world with new designs that convey and renew African identity. Their creations find their way to the West, through the Internet, during international fashion weeks and thanks to several initiatives aimed at promoting fashion. Artists and photographers soon also noticed this development. They use clothing cultures to better understand the convictions, thoughts and feelings of the wearers or the history of a particular place. They examine such topics as Westernisation, post-Colonialism, race and gender equality, religious beliefs or political power.
The participating artists/photographers are Martin Parr, Wangechi Mutu, Viviane Sassen, Zanele Muholi, Jodi Bieber, Jim Naughten, Phyllis Galembo, Héctor Mediavilla, Sabelo Mlangeni, Jehad Nga, Hassan Hajjaj, Nontsikelelo Veleko, Baudouin Mouanda, Daniele Tamagni, Namsa Leuba and Yinka Shonibare.
More information about the Festival here.