UGANDA NATIONAL PAVILION
Venice Art Biennale 2022
dates 23.04.2022 – 27.11.2022
Zuecca Projects is a proud partner of the Uganda National Pavilion, which participates for the first time as a national pavilion in the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia 2022. For the Venice Biennale, two artists from Kampala, Uganda, Acaye Kerunen and Collin Sekajugo, present their work, in an exhibition entitled, “Radiance – They Dream in Time” at the Palazzo Palumbo Fossati.
Acaye Kerunen, Kakare, 2021. Mixed media, 370 cm H x 860 cm W x 50 cm. Photo courtesy ⒸAcaye Kerunen Studio
Says Shaheen Merali, curator – “We are looking forward to presenting the works of Ms. Kerunen and Mr. Sekajugo, whose dual approaches to art-making, while diverse in their respective aesthetic approach, finds a common ground in their respective imaginations on materiality and form. ‘Radiance – They Dream in Time’ refers to the essential knowledge and lived experiences of Kerunen and Sekajugo in speaking to the many different territories of Uganda, as well as to urban trade and living conditions in its urban centers. Both artists have been actively working with formal and informal archives of Uganda’s dynamic visual culture.”
Collin Sekajugo, Stock Image 017-I Own Everything, 2019/2022. Acrylic, barkcloth and mixed media oncanvas, 190 cm H by 300cm W. Photo credit: Maximilien deDycker ⒸCollin Sekajugo Studio
Acaye Kerunen’s process as a socially engaged artist foregrounds the work of local and regional Ugandan craftswomen, celebrating them as integral collaborators and elevating the artistic practices of local artisans who are the gatekeepers of their local wetlands, drawing upon a sacred and unspoken knowledge of ecological stewardship. By deconstructing utilitarian materials and artisan crafts, Kerunen repositions the work in order to tell new stories and posit new meaning. The act of re-installing these deconstructed materials is a response to the agency of women’s work in Africa and an acknowledgment of the role that this artistic labor plays in the climate ecosystem.
Acaye Kerunen, Ouganda, 2021. Mixed Media, 155 cm H x 115 cm W. Photo courtesy ⒸAcaye Kerunen Studio
Collin Sekajugo approaches his work from a distinct, aesthetic departure point that resides in his repeated return to pop culture and the omnipresent influence exuded by the global mainstream, conversing and critiquing its many biases across visual, oral and digital cultures. Since 2012, Sekajugo has worked with the manipulation of the common stock image to reveal its inherent biases of entitlement and privilege largely modeled on the Western self. Sekajugo’s artistic practice highlights a contemporaneous anthropological reversal of this mainstream culture through the lens of a decidedly African sense of irreverence and plays on the ad-hoc. Conceptually, the works of Sekajugo become pure theatre, a hacking of identity that exposes some truths behind these stock images that quietly continue to colonize the entire globe by the weight of their own popularity.
Pic 1. Collin Sekajugo, Stock Image 013–Engaged, 2018/2021. Acrylic and mixed media on canvas, 120cm H by 120 cm W. Photo credit: Maximilien de Dycker. ⒸCollinSekajugo Studio
Uganda National Pavilion
Organization: Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development
Commissioner: Juliana Akoryo Naumo
Curator: Mr. Shaheen Merali
Title: “Radiance – They Dream in Time”
Artists: Acaye Kerunen & Collin Sekajugo
Where: Palazzo Palumbo Fossati, Venice – San Marco 2597, 30124, Venice
When: April 23 – November 27, 2022
Official website: www.ugandapavilion.org