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[JOINT HKUMS PROGRAMME] LECTURE ON "COLOURS OF CONGO" BY DR FLORIAN KNOTHE AND CHRISTMAS CHEERS WITH THE HKUMS MEMBERSHIP
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Date: Wednesday, 23 December 2020 
Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm (HKT)
Language: English
Venue: Online on Zoom
Meeting ID: 922 7193 7231
Password: 857038
Cost: Free admission, all are welcome.
 
Thanks to unprecedented access to extensive archives and art collections, the exhibition’s narrative presents a generous overview of paintings that were instigated when a single artist from Belgium began a painting workshop so as to collaborate with the indigenous population of Elisabethville (modern-day Lubumbashi). This first studio was followed by other workshops that assisted in developing a hybrid artform that remains a celebrated phenomenon.
 
The European influence of painting first began with Georges Thiry, who worked for Belgium’s colonial administration starting in 1926. In Elisabethville, Thiry had noticed a series of painted wall murals of crocodiles and birds. He inquired about the artist and was introduced to Albert Lubaki. Thiry was fascinated by the artist, his wife, and the other community members who continued to document their connection to the natural world through wall paintings.
 
This exhibition and accompanying publication examines the group of paintings as artworks worth considering on their own meritsdescribing their techniques and inherent beauty, while acknowledging that their iconographic contents reflect daily life within the village communities. The juxtaposition of Congolese artists and artistic materials brought from Europe, and the later display of African paintings in European art metropolises, initiated decades of intense collaboration and cultural exchange.
             
    
Image: The Nativity of Christ, Sylvestre Kaballa, Oil on canvas, 50 x 66 cm, Signed ‘Kaballa. Syl. / E/ville 1956’,1956. Pierre Loos Collection
 
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