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Soly Cisse’s work is informed by his upbringing in Senegal, during the country’s transition following periods of social and political unrest. In his paintings, imagined and physical worlds combine to explore relationships, religion, tradition and modernity.
Ideas around shifting, distortion and transformation flow through Cisse’s imagery. In this work, thickly applied acrylic and oil pastel are used to create a layered, complex composition where figures and animals morph together. Any available space on the canvas is filled with dense texture and pattern; spontaneous mark-making is blended with areas where defined forms emerge. The artist has said that he thinks about "relationships between humans, the confrontation between humans and nature, humans and religion – and then I challenge myself and experiment."
Cissé has exhibited his work in numerous solo and group exhibitions in galleries and museums in Europe, the Americas and throughout Africa. His work featured in the seminal exhibition Africa Remix (2004-2007), Dak'Art - Biennale de l'Art African Contemporain (2006), the Havana Biennial (2000) and Sao Paulo Biennial, Brazil (1998). He lives and works in Dakar, Sengal.
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