Serge Olivier Fokoua is one of the artists in the 4th Mediations Biennale in Poznan, Poland.
September 21 till October 26.
Emprise (Hold): installation created in sitù, mixed media, variable dimensions, 2013, © Didier Shaub.
About ‘Emprise’, the project Fokoua did for Dak’Art 2014.
It is clear that the quarrels and wars of influence drives the political parties for the sole purpose of benefiting the personal interests and not those of the people. Universal, Serge Olivier Fokoua’s Installation, Emprise questions the motives of democratic representatives. How can we trust those who “only think with their stomach”? Like a game of musical chairs, Fokoua’s work materializes the round around the presidents, our political leaders, playing a hypocritical game for the sole purpose of finally being at the top of the hierarchical pyramid. And yet, when they finally won the ultimate place, they are caught in a sort of Bermuda Triangle where everything is confused because under the influence of those who wait their turn, without knowing whether they have the capacity to assume such responsibilities. Aware that this idea does not only apply to the higher levels of the state, Fokoua has chosen to personify and de-personify the installation characters with anthropomorphic columns covered with burlap so that the visitor can easily take the place of one of these cooking pots head dolls with bright eyes.
Serge Olivier Fokoua was born in 1976 in Douala. He lives and works in Yaoundé (Cameroon). Formed in visual art at workshops organized by the Spanish Embassy in Cameroon, he has also completed advanced training in cultural management in Hamburg, Germany. Artist working mainly on installation and performance, Fokoua participated in many exhibitions and projects in Cameroon, Nigeria, South Africa, France, Germany, Japan, Canada and Finland. He has recently obtained a grant of residence for the Vermont Studio Center in the USA. Co-founding member of the group Palettes of Kamer, he is since 2008 the Director of Rencontres d’Arts Visuels in Yaoundé called RAVY. He is a member of the international network of festivals, IC ZONE since 2006.
About the biennial:
4th Mediations Biennale titled When Nowhere Becomes Here undertakes a challenge posed nowadays for art by the post-global reality. It aims to go deeper into areas placed between virtual images of our imaginations and making space for possibilities for their observation and analysis.
The three exhibitions in the main programme: Berlin Heist, Shifting Africa and The Limits of Globalisation, and a number of events in the accompanying programme of this year’s Mediations Biennale are not linked with each other apart from their location in Poznan. Multiculturalism, diversity, and even the variety of attitudes are a symptom of postglobal order. The simultaneity of everything decentralizes idea of value. At the same time, in 14 locations in the world there are exhibitions happening under a common umbrella term of post-global mediations. Each of those distant places for its residents is “here,” and for the stranger “nowhere.” Mediations Biennale is both an initiator and a participant in a dialogue. Towards the end of the 4th Mediations Biennale, during an international conference titled “Post-global Future” (25–27 October), all partners shall present different perspectives of upcoming, post-global future.
About the exhibitions in the biennial:
Berlin Heist—or the enduring fascination with walled cities
Curators: Shaheen Merali and Kerimcan Güleryüz, Curatorial assistance: Marta San Gregorio and Malgosia Wosinska
Artists: Artists Anonymous, Kader Attia, Marc Bijl, Thorsten Brinkmann, Nezaket Ekici, Azin Feizabadi, Thomas Florschuetz, Simon Fujiwara, Carla Guagliardi, Johannes Kahrs, Jonathan Meese, Leila Pazooki, Julian Rosefeldt, Enis Rotthoff, Esra Rotthoff, Christoph Schlingensief, Iris Schomaker, Lars Teichmann, Mathilde ter Heijne, Ming Wong, Michael Wutz, Thomas Zipp
Venue: National Museum and the Raczynski Library
Curator: Harro Schmidt
Co-curators: Raphael Chikukwa, National Gallery Harare, Zimbabwe / Serge Olivier Fokoua, RAVY-Festival Yaounde, Kamerun / Martin Baasch, Lagos Live Festival, Nigeria / Jelili O. Atiku, AFiRIperFOMA Festival Harare, Zimbabwe
Artists: Jude Anogwih / Nigeria, Jelili Atiku / Nigeria, Edson Chagas / Angola, Virginia Chihota / Zimbabwe, Jim Chuchu / Kenya, Julie Djikey / DR Congo, Em`kal Eyongakpa / Cameroon, Christian Etongo / Cameroon, Serge Olivier Fokoua / Cameroon, Sam Hopkins / Kenya, Hervé Yamguen / Cameroon, Portia Zvavahera / Zimbabwe, Rolf Bier / Germany, Wolf Böwig / Germany, Dennis Feser / Germany, Kristian von Hornsleth / Denmark, Norbert Meissner / Germany, Tom Otto / Germany, Peter Puype / Belgium, Claudia Wissmann / Germany
Venue: Gallery of Jesuits, ARTykwariat, Bazar Poznanski and public spaces