Iconic and legendary Senegalese artist Issa Samb, born December 31, 1945, has died in Dakar on April 25, 2017.
Samb was a poet and writer, a performance artist, and an installation artist. He was prominent as one of the founders of the artistic movement Laboratoire Agit-Art which began in the early 70s in Senegal. His work which involves assemblage, painting, photography, sculpture, and performance bordered on “the transmission of energies and ideas”. He was also known to be very philosophical.
Koyo Kouoh in her interview in “The New Curator” published by Laurence King in 2016 described Issa Samb, as “A total artist who escapes all sorts of categorizations”. She further wrote,
When you live in Dakar and you are involved in cultural production and in politics, you will encounter Issa Samb; he is unavoidable. He has this generosity and openness to supporting and pushing artistic thought and practice.
A record of Samb’s public presentations includes a retrospective at the National Art Gallery in Dakar in 2010, a solo exhibition at the Office of Contemporary Art in Norway in 2013, participation at documenta (13) in Kassel in 2012 and the 2008 Dak’Art Biennale in Dakar, Senegal.
The featured image above with Issa Samb sitting in the middle is by artist and photographer Fabrice Monteiro in a collaboration with Senegal fashion label Bull Doff. Titled The Missing Link, the work is featured as part of Origins and Future in the traveling exhibition “Making Africa” first shown at Vitra Design Museum, Germany.
Read more about Issa Samb on Africanah.org