KOKOU FERDINAND MAKOUVIA
Of the Earth
Photographic moments without a camera
16 Sep 2021 – 6 Feb 2022
TMH is pleased to present the first solo show of KOKOU FERDINAND MAKOUVIA, which coincides with the completion of his residency at De Ateliers. Makouvia finds inspiration in real and imagined topographies and in his intimate connection to the Mina culture. As works develop, geographical maps lead to layered sculptures, photographic impressions to the physicality of drawings, art materials become tools, and vice versa, seemingly ad infinitum.
The show centers on a site-specific, mixed-media installation that includes his signature ceramics in a river-like formation, to be installed in the garden of TMH. It also features his delicate iron pieces Knocks and Knots, 2021, the sprawling motherly sculpture Éviono, 2018, and his unique camera-less impressions that use perforations on paper, On One Day One Touch, Album Lomé-Ville, 2018.
Sculpture installation in garden: Sculpting the Weight
Screenings of performance video, Feb 2022 / Open weekend with Amsterdam Art, 21-23 Jan 2022 / Curator tour with Marsha Plotnitsky, 9 Oct 2021
In January 2022, in response to ongoing COVID lockdowns in Amsterdam, Makouvia created a video performance entitled ‘Puis, le lait du manioc coule sur les vases éparpillées’ [Then the cassava milk flows over the scattered vases]—filmed against the backdrop of Hilarius Hofstede’s A DEMOCRACY OF THOUGHT. The title, from one of Makouvia’s own poems, underscores his thoughts behind the video: the absolute necessity of our body to move at all times, even when seemingly still; the forces that propel such movement; and our desire to explore the spaces that surround us, which may be open or restricted by biology (such as the current virus), environment, and politics.
Kokou Ferdinand Makouvia (b. 1989) is an award-winning multimedia artist with a singular perspective on the freedoms and tensions that underlie material expression. Makouvia grew up in Lomé, Togo. Committed to making art from his adolescence, he also studied computer science. After attending the art academies in Abidjan (Ivory Coast) and Valenciennes (France), he graduated from the Beaux-Arts de Paris. He is the recipient of a number of awards, including “Révélation 2017” by the ADAGP, and participated in the Jeune Création Européenne Biennale, 2017-19. He is invited for Dak’Art, La Biennale de Dakar in Senegal to take place in 2022. He works with Galerie Sator in Paris and is currently completing his residency at De Ateliers in Amsterdam. He remains actively engaged with educational and art projects in Togo.