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2016 Prix Canson® : Njideka Akunyili Crosby

"For Njideka Akunyili Crosby, inter-racial mixing is a complicated term. First technically as the artist combines drawing and painting, photos and photocopies. Then aesthetically as she likes to blend the cultural images: Africa plays the backdrop, with its wax prints, these tribal signs, these hundreds of photographs of women in boubou, of rois de la sape [kings of style], of soldiers, or of schoolgirls who fill her paintings; for the Western aspect, there are these breakfast tables where Weetabix and Lipton are featured, these homes where the architecture and furnishings recall America in the 1950s. All this merges, while white men and black women embrace.

Njideka Akunyili Crosby says it herself: these works find their intensity in her own duality (born in Nigeria, she lives and works in California), in the views that a part of the world (the West) has on the other (Africa) and vice versa, in the overlapping of their histories.
 The result is a universal work whose proliferations have already seduced the powerful London gallerist Victoria Miro."

Thomas Jean, journalist - Beaux-Arts Magazine