Ivory Coast Pavilion

57th Venice Biennale / Palazzo Dolfin Agostini, Venice, Italy
13 May 2017 - 26 Nov 2017

Jems Robert Koko Bi's contribution to the Ivory Coast Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013

Jems Robert Koko Bi's contribution to the Ivory Coast Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013

After 2013, this is the second time that Ivory Coast takes part in the Venice Biennale. The four presenting artists show an intimate vision of the world in their unique ways.

The artist’s legitimacy is based more in research than in practical results. But it generally requires a successful impact, emotion and intimacy that puts all those who come into contact with his work in a metaphorical and analogical dialogue symbiosis. The photographer Joana Choumali collects through portraits the memory of her country’s and Africa’s female social identity with delicate aesthetic images. Raimondo Galeano with its particular fluorescent pigments paintings creates a compendium of brightness and color that bring us into the duality of our lives, dream and reality. Koko Bi’s work is the result of an inner search that leads him to portray an intimate research on his own values through sculpture, searching for a creative synthesis between African and European traditions. And while Silue explores in ready used matter a new source or rebirth and uses his personal experiences to shape this transition, Watts synthetizes gestures and signs to achieve a very personal, full of vertigo collage.

Curators: Massimo Scaringella

Commissioners: Yacouba Konaté


Joachim Silue was born in Abidjan in 1971. His career in the arts was accompanied with the achievement of several degrees, one of the Visual Arts Academy of Fine Arts in Bologna, a science and surveying degree. Joachim Silue is a painter, sculptor, designer with various editorial publications. Lately he has worked for the Civic Museum of Modena (Italy) teaching courses in visual arts. Modena is his current place of residence.

Ouattara Watts was born in Abidjan. He studied at L’Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts Paris (France), lives and works in New York (USA) now. Central to his paintings is the idea of reunion and association in contrast to division and duality. He calls himself a citizen of the world and wants his work to be able to speak to people everywhere.

Jems Robert Koko Bi is a renowned contemporary sculptor  who now lives in Essen (Germany). Jems Robert Koko Bi was born in Sifra 1966 and studied Spanish History at the University of Abidjan between 1986 and 1988. Between 1988 and 1995 he studied at Institut National Supérieur des Arts et de l’Action Culturelle (INSAAC) in Abidjan. In 1997, he won the DAAD scholarship and moved to Germany where he studied at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf with Klaus Rinke.

Joana Choumali was born in 1974. She is a fine art photographer based in Abidjan. But she first studied Graphic Arts in Casablanca (Morocco) and worked as an Art Director in an advertising agency before embarking on her photography career. Her work focuses primarily on conceptual portraiture, mixed media and documentary. Furthermore, she uses her photography to explore her own identity. Much of her work focuses on Africa, and what she, as an African, is learning about the myriad cultures around her. Joana Choumali’s work allows her to explore assumptions she has and nourishes her as she expands her conceptions of the world.



Palazzo Dolfin Agostini – Dorsoduro 3593
Venice, 30123


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