States Of Being

Photographs: 1960-2004

Jan 05 – Feb 05, 2005
513 West 20th Street New York, NY 10011

Press Release


Photographs: 1960-2004

The Jack Shainman Gallery is proud to present an exhibition of new and previously unexhibited photographs by Malick Sidibé.The photographs in the exhibition cover the broad range of Sidibé’s studio practice since the opening of his Studio Malick in Bamako, Mali, in 1962.Among the images are family, group and individual portraits, as well as dramatic images taken in the clubs and streets of Bamako.Vintage prints under painted glass and handmade paper and tape frames along with newly printed editions will be presented. The exhibition also includes a dramatic new series of images showing the bare backs of Sidibé’s models.

Since his first exhibitions in Europe and the United States over a decade ago, Malick Sidibé has achieved renown internationally as one of the premiere documentarians of the personal and cultural changes of post-colonial Africa.His highly specific and dramatically patterned studio settings frame the look and aspirations of generations of individuals in Bamako.Capturing the changing fashions and characteristic dress of the average citizen Sidibé, like August Sander, has written the history of his countrymen in thousands of black and white photographs.

The latest images in the current exhibition include not only new portraits but images taken by Sidibé at his own expense of the backs of men, women and groups of individuals.Sidibé has described his motivation for taking these new images.Surprisingly intimate, the portraits reveal the poignant physicality behind the elaborate dress, costumes and props which have become so associated with the “classic” Sidibé style.

Malick Sidibé is the 2003 recipient of The Hasselblad Award.Recent exhibitions include The Cartier Foundation (solo), Paris, France, 2004, “African Art, African Voices,” Philadelphia Museum of Art, PA, 2004, and “Common Ground, Discovering Community in 150 Years of Art”, Corcoran Museum of Art, Washington, DC, 2004.Sidibé’s work is included in the permanent collections of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, SF, Birmingham Museum of Art, AL, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY, Philadelphia Museum of Art, PA, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA and the International Center of Photography, New York, NY, among numerous others.