12 February - 18 June 2014
Iziko South African National Gallery
Cape Town, South Africa
Autograph ABP to present the first major Rotimi Fani-Kayode museum retrospective in Africa
Rotimi Fani-Kayode’s photographs constitute a profound narrative of sexual and cultural difference, seminal in their deeply personal and political exploration of diaspora, desire and spirituality. In his large-scale colour and black and white portraits, the black male body becomes the focal point of a photographic enquiry: ancestral memories and a provocative, multi-layered symbolism fuse with archetypal motifs from European and African cultures and subcultures, inspired by what Yoruba priests call ‘the technique of ecstasy’.
A founding member and first Chair of Autograph ABP, Fani-Kayode died in 1989. 'On three counts I am an outsider: in matters of sexuality, in terms of geographical and cultural dislocation; and in the sense of not having become the sort of respectably married professional my parents might have hoped for', Fani-Kayode famously wrote. 'Such a position gives me the feeling of having very little to lose'. (Traces of Ecstasy, 1987).