This article focuses on Viyé Diba’s Tout Se Sait (2014), a mixed-media installation that framed and evoked the experience of Dakar’s streets. Exhibited at the Koba Club in downtown Dakar during the Dak’Art Biennale 2014, this proposition expanded on themes, approaches, and materials in Diba’s precedent mixed-media work. With more than four decades of artistic practice and a doctorate in urban geography from the University of Nice, Diba has long explored issues involving urban life in his work. In this installation, the artist translated the order and disorder of Dakar’s streets in affective terms. Using materials culled from daily life, he redirected our focus to our daily field of vision, urging us “to really see what we look at” and feel its effect. By addressing Diba’s work in relation to the city as both source and frame, this article examines how Tout Se Sait brought new levels of clarity, resolution, and aesthetic resonance to the exploration of various economies—visual, spatial, material, and commercial—that shape lived experience in Dakar.
Research Article|May 01 2015
Viyé Diba’s Tout Se Sait: The Affective Experience of Urban Life
Joanna Grabski is the John and Christine Warner Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at Denison University. In addition to writing about expressive culture in Dakar, she recently directed and produced the feature-length documentary film Market Imaginary, 2012 (distributed by Indiana University Press) and is completing a book on Dakar’s artists in relation to their city.
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Nka (2015) 2015 (36): 94-107.
Joanna Grabski; Viyé Diba’s Tout Se Sait: The Affective Experience of Urban Life. Nka 1 May 2015; 2015 (36): 94–107. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10757163-2914361
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