March 23-August 25, 2013
“Symmetry/Asymmetry draws attention to African textiles as abstract works of art to highlight their aesthetic dimension. At the same time the exhibition suggests a synaesthetic experience as these once kinetic works engaged multiple senses.
Over 40 works of African textiles, dress, and adornment – to include objects from throughout the continent and from South Africa to the Sahara – are presented. A broad spectrum of art spanning more than 7,000 years of artistic innovation, from a Neolithic stone bracelet to twentieth and twenty-first century commemorative cloths emblazoned with the faces of Kwame Nkrumah, Nelson Mandela, and President Obama, are included. A magnificent selection of indigo cloths from West Africa and Kuba textiles from Central Africa are also presented. The exhibition provides a surprisingly diverse range of symmetric and asymmetric designs.
Organization & Support
The exhibition is generously funded by the Fred and Rita Richman Special Initiative Endowment Fund for African Art.”
Printed cloths celebrating President Obama.
Yoruba (Nigeria), Wodaabe (Niger) and Malian robes, on the wall (left to right) two Yoruba adire eleko, an indigo wrapper from Senegal, a blue and white cotton blanket from Mali, and a Yoruba women’s weave kijiipa wrapper.
Two kaasa and the reverse of the Malian robe.
Kuba cloths and hats from D.R. Congo.
Dida raffia cloths from Ivory Coast and (right) a barkcloth from D.R. Congo.
Click on the photos to enlarge. All photos copyright the High Museum of Art.