Demonic bestiary of Makonde in the perception of Warsaw respondents




perception, East Africa, Makonde, contemporary art of Tanzania


Perception is a particularly interesting and quite diverse phenomenon. It mainly depends on different interpretations presented by recipients. This work aims at constituting a cross-sectional list of analyses of attitudes presented by Warsaw society during contact with sculptures of Makonde artists. Thanks to the support of PTAfr and the courtesy of the Library in Koszykowa Street, on 16-19 January, and on 24 January 2018, research was carried out in reference to the exhibition titled: «Między sztuką a opętaniem. Hebanowe bestiarium ludu Makonde. Fotografie Piotra Sadurskiego» [Between Art and Possession. Ebony bestiary of Makonde people. Piotr Sadurski Photography]. During the exhibition, sculptures from the collection of Ewa and Eugeniusz Rzewuski entered into the artistic dialogue with photographs by Piotr Sadurski. All the exhibited works were mainly in the style of shetani, referring to demonic presentations. Makonde sculptures are an example of contemporary art of East Africa. Their roots should be sought in indigenous traditions and beliefs. Makonde artists come from Mozambique, but as a result of social unrest many of them were forced to leave their homeland. They found themselves safe in Tanzania, where a large part of Makonde people live and create in the Dar Es Salaam area until today. The exhibition featured sculptures of the most outstanding representatives of this trend. Within the research, the respondents attending the exhibition were presented with photographs made in two distinct stylistic conventions: chiaroscuro one and formal one. The primary objective of this is to show some ways of perception of Makonde artists' sculptures, distant in terms of culture, by respondents participating in the Warsaw research.




How to Cite

Gralak, Z. (2021). Demonic bestiary of Makonde in the perception of Warsaw respondents. TEXT AND IMAGE: ESSENTIAL PROBLEMS IN ART HISTORY, 1(7).



Modern and Contemporary art