VIBES is the fourth in a series of artist-led exhibitions initiated in Kumasi in 2018 by the “ASAFO BLACK” collective after Holy Grail, The Show and Why So Serious. The exhibition features six “sensational” artists (Nuna Adisenu- Doe, Larry Bonćhaka, Samuel Kortey Baah, Scrapa, Jeffrey Otoo and Denyse Gawu Mensah) – whose works derive content, subject matter and materials from popular global culture as well as alternative worlds. Their independent approach to artistic praxis aims to stretch the boundaries of art as we know it by resorting to familiar and non-artistic processes— evoking relational, digital, sculptural and pictorial forms. “VIBES” is a catch phrase in youth lingua that resonates in popular music, Hip-Hop and its derivate genres. We chose it as the title of the exhibition because it encapsulates the new spirit we embody, instigated by blaxTARLINES KUMASI, which testifies to the universality of art –that art can be anything, is everywhere and is potentially available as a means of expression and avenue of experience to anyone.
Members of the ASAFO BLACK collective have, over the few years it has been active, developed a communal and critical attitude towards each other’s practice and to the world we live in. Our aesthetic approach deploys objects, installations, paintings, texts, postproduction techniques, graffiti, GIFs, etc
embedded in humor, wit, and sometimes obscenities, as decoy for what could turn into political engagement between producers and audiences. The National theatre encapsulates these concerns since it functions as a site of national heritage that we conceive of as implicating Ghana’s political history even as it fulfills its cultural mandate to offer entertainment to its audiences through programming.