Why is Ernest Mancoba so relevant in the year 2020?Ernest Mancoba personifies an artist’s legacy that searches for clarity around the human condition. He does it through movement in form and colour, in drawings, paintings and sculptures, a “traveller of the mind and adventurer of the form”, to borrow words by the artist himself.
Ernest draws on life experiences ranging from early memories of his family’s relationships to the ancestors, to education in the field of journalism and later on in art education in Paris, as well as a deep and rooted artistic practice in Denmark. We encounter an artist with a focused and careful relationship towards artistically researching man’s position here on earth. An artist who is not afraid of debating Europe’s one-sided relationship to the African continent and its artforms in a time of the many breakthroughs of modernism within art. In this exhibition we have created a smaller museum for the works of Ernest Mancoba from the Danish collections of the Ernest Mancoba Sonja Ferlov Estate in Denmark as well as Museum Jorn Silkeborg. We are also showing artworks by the contemporary artists Kitso Lynn Lelliott, Kemang Wa Lehulere, Chloé Quenum, Myriam Mihindou, Mathewsie Amidlak, Nkuli Mlangeni Berg and James Webb that are inspired by or related to the legacy of Ernest Mancoba.
Documentation from the 7.th of March, opening Ernest Mancoba – An Artist and His Legacy. Conversation between Joanna Sandell, director, Södertälje konsthall and Alicia Knock, curator Centre Pompidou. Performance by Ageli.
Three curators from three different regions of the world have discussed Ernest Mancoba’s artistic position before the opening of his exhibition in Södertälje konsthall: Alicia Knock from France, Joanna Sandell from Sweden and Dr. Same Mdluli from South Africa. Dr Same Mdluli is the curator behind A Black Aestetic: A View of South African Artists (1970-1990) that was shown at Standard Bank Gallery in Johannesburg in the spring of 2019, an institution where Same is presently also the artistic director. Södertälje konsthall asked her reflect on Ernest Mancoba’s position in art history. In this essay she writes on Ernest Mancoba and spirituality from an African view point.