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  • Writer's pictureSegolene Py

Lina Iris Viktor, Some Are Born to Endless Night - Dark matter, at the Autograph Gallery

At the beginning of this year, the Autograph gallery located in central London had this wonderful #exhibition of Lina Iris Viktor, Some are Born to Endless Night – Dark Matter.

The England-born #Liberian artist lives and work between New York and #London. Her work is made #unique by her practice in using #contemporary and #ancient art forms: #painting, #sculpture, #performance, #photography, #installation and #gilding 24k gold. The title is taken from William Blake’s poem “Auguries of Innocence”, already painting the colours of the exhibition’s tone. In his poem Blake describes to us a spiritual suffering engendered by the cruel human being leaning heavily on innocent creatures (he uses a lot of animal references), a world of #corruption and #inhumanity, traits ingrained in the deepest part of their soul. The reference to the poem as I see it is the immense impact of the power of #slavery and #colonisation on the mind of people who, sometimes unconsciously, are racist in everything they do and believe non-white people as inferior. Also, just as #Blake, Viktor wants to present a rediscovery of ancient myths and ancient art techniques.

She explores the definition of #blackness and

challenges the 19th century fixed-idea of Africa as the “dark continent” through the representation of dark nude female bodies highlighted by touches of white and 24k gilded gold, she calls “light-work”, also giving volume to the work. Lina Iris Viktor also created the ‘Blue Room’: As the viewer steps in, they instantly feel like entering another world, a meditative space; A blue world decorated with portraits of the artist, regally presented with #African culture symbols such as African fabric patterns, names of African tribes written all around the work, or typical hairstyles.

Lina Iris Viktor questions the representation of blackness and spirituality in her work with her #imaginative world filled with #history, #culture, and philosophical ideas centred around the West African culture.

All pictures belong to the artist


About the gallery:

Autograph Gallery

Rivington Place



T: 020 7749 1240


The Autograph association was founded in 1988 to support Black photographers. Between this date and 2007, the office was located in Brixton and was amibitoulsy organising exhibitions and events in diverse places (museum, gallery, festival, public sites) but also had their own publications. In 2007 they acquired the Charity status and at the same time moved the office to a purposed-built home in Shoreditch, the current gallery space. Today this space provides them with the opportunity to develop an annual programme of events and organisation, house their collection in archives and set up a learning studio.

#exhibitioncrave #blackphotographers

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