Dakar-based artist Issa Samb is presenting his first UK solo exhibition, entitled From the Ethics of Acting to the Empire Without Signs, at Rivington Place this summer. Samb founded the Laboratoire Agit’Art in Senegal with a group of other artists including filmmaker Djibril Diop Mambety, painter El Hadj Sy, and playwright Youssoufa Dione in 1974. From its inception, the Laboratoire was a revolutionary and subversive artist collective that brought together many creative disciplines from painting to performance.
Samb's distinctive body of work is defined by his provocative approach, which is combines collective action, dramaturgical improvisation and the interactivity of traditional African performance. These different influences come together in sculptural form within the courtyard of his atelier in the Rue de Jules Ferry in Dakar, where found and transformed objects and materials including threads, fabrics, clothing, branches, stones and other ephemera are installed around a tree. This dynamic arrangement provides an entry point into the spirit of Issa Samb as an artist as well as the Laboratoire Agit’Art as a collective.
For this new exhibition, Samb will design a new installation referencing the changing environment of his atelier, as well as his unique collaboration with French theatre director Jean Michel Bruyère.
From the Ethics of Acting to the Empire Without Signs is on at Iniva until 26 July.
Iniva, Rivington Place, London EC2A 3BA
Images courtesy of the artist, the photographer and Iniva.