welcome... ...stranger
08.12.2020 – 08.01.2021

Welcome Stranger by Gareth Nyandoro, at Villa des Arts, photo by Pascal Nampémanla Traoré

Dakar (Senegal)

What affects personal identity and presence in the world? Your exterior is public, what does it say about your interior? About one's own and the strange? Welcome Stranger initiated and realized a special, international artistic collaborative project in 2020/2021 that brought together three artists of different nationalities in a house in the middle of a residential area in Dakar, Senegal. Dakar provides a fascinating context because it is a rapidly growing city with an emerging and vibrant art scene.

The three artists that Welcome Stranger brought together in Dakar were Laye Kâ Abdoulaye Laye Kâ (1977, Missirah), Tim Breukers (Netherlands) and Gareth Nyandoro (Zimbabwe). Accustomed to working in many different cultures, all three show translations and reflections of these ideas in their artistic practice. Materiality and experimentation also play an important role in their work.

Abdoulaye Laye Kâ (1977, Missirah) is part of a new generation of artists in Senegal who are not yet well known. Originally from the south of Senegal, his work focuses on consumer society. Recently he started using barcodes in his work. Tim Breukers (1985, The Hague) is a sculptor. His sculptures often show decay; sometimes they seem closed, but there are openings where new life is possible, as in en­ counters with others: at first there seems to be no opening, but then suddenly a connection happens. Gareth Nyandoro (1982, Bikita) has a miraculous ability to use paper to create space and to fill it with large sculptures and installations. They offer a unique perspective on scenes of everyday life, and often include commonplace objects from the market in the arrangement. His source of inspiration is the landscape of the city and its inhabitants.

The artists made an "in situ presentation" with the name Biti ak Biir, local for L'Intérieur L'Extérieur. The private location was accessible to the public in the period December 8th till January 8th 2021, simultaneously with Partcours 2020. All kinds of art spaces in Dakar took part, including the mystical art spaces that are so typical for Dakar, which are found in various houses. They are difficult to define, let alone visit.

A publication is made and launched in June 2021.