The street enters the museum! In Abidjan, the municipality of Abobo is hosting an exhibition on local street art at the Adama Toungara Museum. A first for graffiti and tags that strewn across the city’s roads. It is also a recognition for the artists, still very few to train on the street.
as reported from Abidjan, Sidy Yansane
YZ’s female portraits, Obou’s masked characters, Zifu’s graffiti … so many creations were exhibited at MuCAT, Adama Toungara’s contemporary art museum in Abobo. For the first time on the Ivory Coast, a dozen street artists see their wild art recognized as a work in itself.
An achievement by Zoro Zipa: “Before I did street art, I was hunted, I was beaten,” he explains to us. Today I am invited to exhibit at the museum. It gives me a lot of courage. When I do street art, young people on the street will often encourage me by buying water for me, by giving me 500 francs for my transportation … And there, frankly, it makes me happy! “He said.
MuCAT was inaugurated in March 2020 and wants to help change Abobo’s municipality’s sulfur-rich reputation.
For the museum’s director Nathalie Varlet Méplon, street art corresponds to this ambition. “This art that was on the street … I said to myself: people live with it … look at it or maybe no longer look at it because it’s part of their interior, but at least they know it. I said to myself: “how do you get them to come up with something that they have mastered, because they have it outside? So we will widen the street to the museum and so that we will expand this art. Then they will see there, the whole Abidjan “with lots of graffiti … Lots of artists have worked in many, many municipalities and they may realize that what they have outside also has value. And so it is somewhere a first link between the museum and its population”.
The exhibition runs until September 5 and hopes to attract 5,000 visitors.
Also for listening: Ivory Coast: the street artist’s YZ portrait of street vendors in Abidjan