Nov 17th, 2017, 12:36 PM

Malick Sidibé: Mali Twist!

By Sarah Mahgoub
Image Credit:
African photography that challenges the norms of the "swinging sixties".

From October 20, 2017  to February 28, 2018 the Fondation Cartier is hosting the gallery of the Malian photographer Malick Sidibe also known as "the eye of Bamako". His all black and white collection of photos taken during the 60's in Bamako Mali represents the youth culture and nightlife. Sidibe was known to be invited to all the parties to take images that were officially set to begin when his flash went of in the room. He would stay up to the early hours developing his images and displaying the images on folders according to the club attended for the part goers to come and view. They could reminisce on a great weekend and the young men were known to buy the images and give them to the girls.

Regardez- moi !, 1962 Image Credit: Malick Sidibé/ Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris

The exhibit features over 250 images, some never seen before as well as the iconic image titled  "Nuit De Noel" taken in 1963 which has been labeled by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential images.

"Nuit de Noel" (1963) by Malick Sidibe Image Credit: Malick Sidibé / Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain , Paris

“Music freed us. Suddenly, young men could get close to young women, hold them in their hands. Before, it was not allowed. And everyone wanted to be photographed dancing up close.”
Sidibe on Christmas Eve capturing the image above.

By documenting Bamako’s youth culture and its social clubs and weekly parties influenced by some Western bands and music genres, Sidibe was able to reveal a different kind of portrayal of Africa that really contrasts with the images of Africa that stereotypically portray people of the continent. His exhibit challenges the multitude of images we are shown of the unhappiness, hunger, and grief of Africans which leads to the belief that this is the reality when in fact, they have parties, friends, and families and take images like everywhere else. 

Les Amis dans la Même Tenue, 1972 Image Credit:  Malick Sidibé/The Pigozzi Collection/CAAC

Regardez-moi!, 1962 Image Credit: Malick Sidibé/Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris

What: Malick Sidibe exhibit that you have seen plastered all over the metro

Where: Fondation Cartier

How to get there: Metro ( Raspail or Denfert Rochereau )

 How much: Student tickets are 8 Euros

Why: To experience a great collection of photos, see the work of this Malian photographer, examine the culture and life of Malians in a new way

When: You have until February 28 to check out the exhibition.

Hours: Monday closed, Tuesday 11am-10pm, Wednesday- Sunday 11AM- 8PM

Here is a video posted on the Fondation Cartier website.