Thursday, 15 September 2016

Abdoulaye Konaté: Symphonie en couleur

These large, wonderful textile hangings are the work of Malian artist Abdoulaye Konaté. He is a new discovery for me, and I really enjoyed exploring his work at this first UK showing at Blain Southern. 

They are exquisitely composed fabric constructions that explore colour relationships and harmonies, and incorporate embroidery and tie-dye techniques, whilst making links between tonal colour gradations and musical tonalities - both elements which are important in Malian culture.

The cotton fabric strips that make up these works are dyed with vibrant, deeply saturated colours, and the strips that are tie-dyed intentionally resemble, and make reference to the naturally occurring veins and streaks found in the rocks and geology of Konaté's homeland.

There is something about these works that also reminds me of stylised Egyptian hieroglyphs and pyramid paintings, especially Goddess figures such as Isis, and also the structures of birds wings and the way their feathers are arranged and hang. 

This is another show like Etel Adnan's, where the colours used really energise and uplift you. It really is a symphonie en couleur.

Abdoulaye Konaté: Symphonie en couleur
until 24th September 
Blain Southern
4 Hanover Square