Oba Series from “The Inaugural Pavilion at the Venice Biennial”
Tableau Vivant; The Obas – Her Majesty, Queen Olori Omoyemi Ade, (series of 8 costumes/photographs) and Tableau Vivant; The Obas Her Majesty, Queen Ada Charlotte Osumuo
Photography / Performance
Fabricated using repurposed clothing, the dresses modelled in this performance reference the late nineteenth-century royal court styles of the European nations that colonized Africa after the Berlin Conference of 1884-5. In an attempt to reclaim the gap in history, women of colour wear these dresses. The costumes draw attention to the inconsistencies between the perceived backwardness of African cultures at the moment of colonisation and the history of rich cultural tradition that was effaced by colonial encounters.