The first thing you notice as you walk into Gallery 1957 at the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City is that this is no ordinary space and this is no ordinary exhibition.
You may have been told that Sassa is a photo exhibition and so, maybe, you expected black and white stills against a white border in stern black frames, mounted on stark white walls. Fortunately for us all, the only thing you got right in your imagination of this exhibition was the color of the walls.
Zohra Opoku, the German-Ghanaian artist who created the works displayed in Sassa, describes the exhibition as an exploration of herself within the origins of her Ghanaian side, a journey to understanding who she is in connection with her father, mother and hometown.
Zohra uses a variety of mediums to present her photos, combining traditional photo paper with wood, to create sculptures, digital technology, in a form of performance, and cloth, as a canvas. She is present in each piece, whether as a subject of the camera’s lens, or through the items found in her home and used as structures for displaying her photos.
While the space at the 1957 Gallery at Kempinski is ultra-modern (square space, stark walls, muted lighting and a little bit of a chill), the work constantly swayed between rustic (the wooden album case and the display of nature) and high-tech (the projected video loop on the wall and the metal work). In that regard, It mimics modern Ghanaian life.
With Sassa, Zohra Opoku has “created her own versions of reality through time and place and through the elements around her, invented her own rituals and traditions”. We believe that Sassa was special in its creativity, adding to the already growing realization that African and Ghanaian art can take many forms, as it will always be created through the lens of artists with diverse backgrounds.
We look forward to future collaborations between Zohra Opoku and Nana Oforiatta Ayim, who is the Creative Director of Gallery 1957 and curated the Sassa exhibition.
P.S. The Sassa exhibition has been extended to Thursday August 18th, 2016 so if you haven’t seen it yet you best hurry to Gallery 1957.
Accra We Dey!
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