Its absolutely amazing the level of organisation happening in the creative arts on the continent. While busy with the internet of things, I came across LagosPhoto festival, and because the whole point of conté is to get Africa #CreativelyUnited, naturally I was intrigued and wanted to find out more. Over the next 2 weeks we’re dedicating our Conte Magazine platforms to the great artists participating in this festival. The Lagosphoto Foundation hosts the seventh edition of the annual LagosPhoto Festival in Lagos, Nigeria, October 22 – November 21, and it is titled Rituals and Performance.

Currently in its seventh edition, Lagos Photo is the first and only international arts festival of photography in Nigeria. In a month long programme, events include exhibitions, workshops, artist presentations, discussions, screening, and large scale outdoor installations in congested public spaces in Lagos. LagosPhoto aims to provide a platform for the development and education of contemporary photography in Africa by establishing mentorships and cross-cultural collaborations with local and international artists. LagosPhoto presents photography as it is embodied in the exploration of historical and contemporary issues, the promotion of social programmes, and the reclaiming of public spaces. LagosPhoto 2016 will feature thirty photographers spanning seventeen countries. Its exciting to note, South Africans Gideon Mendel, Siwa Mgoboza and Mohau Modisakeng are part of the participating artists.

Rituals and Performance: explores the role of acts of repetition that shape gender, image, identity, social agency, power and social constructs in contemporary society. The repetitive acts imbued with belief become coercive and normative. It shapes our general idea of what is true in determining an African image, gender, religion, beauty, social class and so forth. Michel Foucault’s (1980) conception on the transmissions and representations of power not just in its ability to contain and control but in its ability to enable individuals to function within cultural roles and allows for alternative self-definitions and self-presentations. Contemporary visual representations directly affect the cultural meanings associated with image construction and interpretation.

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