Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / Galembo exhibits sensual summer line of priests & priestesses
Galembo exhibits sensual summer line of priests & priestesses
04
Jul '08
Artist Phyllis Galembo has traveled extensively to photograph visually stunning costumes worn by traditional priests and priestesses, carnival performers, Halloween revelers, and Haitian vodoo practitioners. Her recent photographic portraits of masqueraders from West Africa will be featured in a an exhibition at George Eastman House this summer, titled West African Masquerade: Photographs by Phyllis Galembo, on view this summer June 28 through Sept. 28.

West African Masquerade features 34 large-format color photographs, taken on location between 2004 and 2006 in the West African countries of Nigeria, Burkina Faso, and Benin. Galembo has crossed cultural boundaries and earned national recognition for her work. Art in America has praised her combination of a "careful, almost ethnographic observation with a deep sense of mystical wonder," and the New York Times recognized the "dignity, conviction, and formal power" in her photographs.

Galembo's work has been driven by curiosities and questions such as, "What happens when we put on a mask and inhabit a different persona?" and "How does ritual dress contribute to our connection to spirituality?" Galembo considers herself an artist, not an anthropologist, and her decisions about color, light, and background have more to do with aesthetic desires than ethnographic precision. She is focused on the invention and expressive craft of costume-making and the potential for transformation that wearing such garments allows.

The elaborate costumes featured are often made of inexpensive materials such as raffia, carved wood, coarse fabrics, crocheted yarns, body paint, flowers, grasses, leaves, and sticks. The outfits run a gamut of dramatic designs and shapes, from striped-knit bodysuits to appliquéd fabric costumes as voluminous as pup tents. One head-to-toe costume from Benin sports dozens of long, fluttering strips of spotted and striped fur; another, from Burkina Faso, looks like a walking sunflower, its wearer hidden under a cascade of fresh green leaves. A ghostly white-clad figure from Nigeria is topped with a grimacing painted-wood skull worn like a hat.

Created for festivities and ceremonies such as weddings and burials, initiations, chiefs' coronations, and holidays like Christmas and the New Year, the costumes can be worn to disguise anyone, from a grown man or woman to a child. The subjects range from adults to teenagers, but Galembo does not know the identity of the individual beneath each mask. This mystery lies at the heart of her interest in costuming and masking — acts that allow the wearer to become something else, to change gender, or species, or even into spirits.

"They have intentionally transformed themselves into something exotic, charged, even frightening," said musician/photographer David Byrne, who has exhibited at Eastman House and described Galembo's work on his blog. "There is combined a long deep legacy of dress-up for masquerade, for carnival, for possession by the gods combined with personal creativity and ingenuity. These are not people in their ordinary dress — they are intentionally fantastic, shocking, wild."


Must ReadView All

Pakistan govt notifies 50% duty drawback on exports

Textiles | On 21st Oct 2017

Pakistan govt notifies 50% duty drawback on exports

The Pakistan government has notified the ‘Duty Drawback of Taxes...

Ghana sets up task force to clamp down on textile piracy

Textiles | On 21st Oct 2017

Ghana sets up task force to clamp down on textile piracy

Ghana’s ministry of trade and industry has set up a taskforce to...

Courtesy: Coach

Fashion | On 21st Oct 2017

US company Coach to change name to Tapestry from Oct 31

Coach Inc., a New York-based house of modern luxury accessories and...

Interviews View All

Siddharth Biyani
Mangalam Industries Pvt Ltd

‘The manufacturing sector is improving day-by-day, becoming better in...

Pinkesh Jain
Everflow Petrofils Ltd

‘An innovative technology which India needs desperately is the...

Saket Garg
Garg Corporation

The biggest challenge is lack of skilled workforce and competition from...

Harsh Shah

Established in 1956 with a small beginning, Embee today manufactures a...

Harmeet Singh

New Delhi-based Jogindra Industries Private Limited provides an assortment ...

Hardik Sanghvi

Idealin Fogging Systems has been engaged in designing and manufacturing...

Steve Cole
Xerium Technologies

Steve Cole of Xerium Technologies discusses the industry. Xerium is the...

Kerem Durdag
Biovation II LLC

Kerem Durdag, CEO, Biovation II LLC, provides an insight into future...

Suresh Patel
Sidwin Fabric

Sidwin Fabric is a manufacturer and exporter of polypropylene textiles and ...

Prathyusha Garimella
Prathyusha Garimella

Hyderabad-based designer <b>Prathyusha Garimella</b> is known for blending ...

Rupa Sood and Sharan Apparao
Nayaab

Nayaab, an exhibition meant to celebrate Indian weaves, is in its second...

Karan Arora
Karan Arora

Bridal couture created with rich Indian heritage, exquisite craftsmanship...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

October 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

news category


Related Categories:

Planning to Take the Leap towards
Sustainability?

Do you see sustainability as a route to business growth?

Yes No

Do you think the sustainability space has the needed tools and resources available for a business to lead change?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you see sustainability as a route to business growth?

Yes
77.1%
No
12.9%
Skip
10.0%

Total Votes: 70

Do you think adopting a sustainable approach will be a profitable move for your business?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you think the sustainability space has the needed tools and resources available for a business to lead change?

Yes
61.4%
No
28.6%
Skip
10.0%

Total Votes: 70

Do you want the world to know about your sustainability journey and your business’ environmental footprint?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you think adopting a sustainable approach will be a profitable move for your business?

Yes
85.7%
No
10.0%
Skip
4.3%

Total Votes: 70

Thanks for your valuable feedback. Claim your free latest sustainability e-book.

Active Poll

Do you want the world to know about your sustainability journey and your business’ environmental footprint?

Yes
75.7%
No
11.4%
Skip
12.9%

Total Votes: 70


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search