Staging Reality, Documenting Fiction examines contemporary photographers working in Africa that toe the line between photography and truth, incorporating conceptual practices and performative strategies that expand traditional photographic approaches and techniques.
While photography has historically been positioned as a “window to the world”, with an immediate and tangible relationship to its subject matter, many contemporary artists working on the continent incorporate image-based strategies that move beyond the confines of the photojournalistic gaze and produce works that negotiate the complex social and political concerns that define a new Africa in the twenty-first century. They explore how the ubiquity of images plays a vital role in how reality is constructed and understood.
By incorporating genres such as staged narratives, performance, appropriation, self-portraiture, and still life, these artists push the temporal and spatial boundaries of the photographic medium. In doing so, Staging Reality, Documenting Fiction explores how we imagine different futures and charter fictive worlds, using photography as a catalyst to explore the changing realities of Africa.
Launched in 2010, LagosPhoto is the first and only international arts festival of photography in Nigeria. In a month long festival, events include exhibitions, workshops, artist presentations, discussions and large scale outdoor prints displayed throughout the city with the aim of reclaiming public spaces and engaging the general public with multifaceted stories of Africa.
LagosPhoto aims to establish a community for contemporary photography which will unite local and international artists through images that encapsulate individual experiences and identities from across all of Africa. LagosPhoto presents and educates about photography as it is embodied in the exploration of historical and contemporary issues, the sharing of cultural practices, and the promotion of social programs.