A project by UNESCO-MOST – C.I.P.S.H – Mémoire de l’Avenir
O’Maurice Mboa works on plates using an engraving technique he has been developing for years. He distinguished himself by a transversal research linked to his traditions and his land, oriented towards the inevitability of decentralization and globalization – terms often used nowadays with a scope that is very difficult to grasp. In this respect he might be called a “glo-cal” artist because his work associates a global and a local vision.
He remains deeply linked to the soul, the spiritual realm of his ancestors while paying due attention to the expectations of his contemporaries. Embedding ancient practices, his metal engravings in three dimensions represent a precise action, both social and territorial, ensuring a form of continuity between tradition and modernity.
The work on matter remains fundamental in this approach. He establishes a vertical and revealing relationship with the world that impregnates his techniques and creations.
Moreover, the artist is interested in philosophy and aesthetics in order to characterize the problems associated with the collective making of an identity or rather of the “illusion of an identity” as enacted and controlled by the current commodification and standardization of the world. Thus, since 2014, this approach has led him to work on imprints, barcodes, QR codes and hyper-connectivity. He explores the transition from one century to the other, the emerging new century with its commodification of the world, lost identities and the importance of history and the role of memory in this new era.
He began a series entitled “Soul-prints” in 2014. Using imprints on a face, this technique corresponds to the portrait, the distinctive mark of identity in the Western world, for example, a distinctive mark of one social class in relation to another. Today, portraits have been replaced by commercial brands via fingerprints and barcodes, a global phenomenon of trade and market communication.
In this video the artist takes the role of his characters as images of his works are shown on his body.
Peintings: ©O’Maurice Mboa & ©Mundus Imaginalis
Photo and video: ©Parissa de Montenach & ©Mundus Imaginalis