Pélagie Gbaguidi Brussels

Pélagie Gbaguidi (from Benin born in Dakar in 1965), lives and works in Brussels. Gbaguidi calls herself a contemporary “griot”. A “griot” questions the individual as he or she moves through life by absorbing the words of the ancients and modeling them like a ball of fat that he or she places in the stomach of each passer-by with the ingredients of the day. In the practical sense, it breaks the commonplace rhythm by inserting subtle incidents integrating its part of eternity. Her work is an anthology of signs and traces on the trauma. In fact, it is one of her recurrent subjects, evidenced by the acquisition of 100 drawings of the Code Noir (1685) series at the Memorial Act in Guadeloupe. Her focus of interest is centered on the colonial and postcolonial archives and on the unmasking of the process of forgetting in history. This readjustment of the imaginary arouses in the artist the urgency to give it form, a writing of liberating images and a corpus to draw contemporary forms. She has participated in numerous international exhibitions such as; Biennale of Dakar (2004, 2006, 2008, 2014, 2018), Asyl Stadtmuseum, Stadtmuseum, Munich (Germany) 2013, Divine Comedy: Heaven, Hell, Purgatory Revisited by Contemporary African Artists, MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (Germany ) 2014, Divine Comedy: Heaven, Hell, Purgatory Revisited by Contemporary African Artists, National Museum of African Art – Smithsonian Institution, Washington (USA) 2015, El iris de Lucy, Musac, Castilla y León (Spain), L’iris de Lucy, Musée Rouchechouart, (France), El iris de Lucy CAAM Spain 2017; Afriques Capitales Gare de Saint Sauveur Lille 2017; The Beauty of the Difference Palace of Lieberose Germany 2017. She took part in the last Documenta 14 in Athens and Kassel and contributed in the last book Why Are We ‘Artists’? 100 World Art Manifestos from Jessica Lack. In October 2018, she received a scholarship from Civitella Ranieri Foundation. In 2019, she participated in Decolonizing the Body at Eternal Network Gallery in France and at the Exhibition Multiple Transmissions: Art in the Afropolitan Age at WIELS (Brussels) and at the biennial of Lubumbashi in October. In 2020 she took part in the 11th Berlin Biennale. Currently she is presenting a group project with students In Praxis decolonial in a group exhibition at the Centrale for Contemporary Art in Brussels, BXL Universel II multipli.city.

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