Essamba Art – Discover the world through the eyes of Angèle Etoundi Essamba


The Noirs series features blown -up, sober black & white photographs of black people against a black background. Accessories and props have been left aside so that the focus lays purely on black on black.
I explore and exploit the texture of the medium of black-and-white photography to underline the black skin as it is and highlight the black identity in its smallest details and from inside out.

The human is shown without any artifice, in its simplicity, its purity, its depth to rise beyond everything.
The sitters seek proximity and reciprocity by expressing the human interiority and intimacy. Their gestures, and striking gaze state their determination to move forward, to fly higher, to re-write history.

The photographs rethink and deconstruct stereotypes representations of misery, lamentations, exoticism. By emphasizing on the black figure in a symbolic and aesthetic dimension, Noirs invite the viewer to enter the subject’s clear affirmation of the self through faces and bodies which speak of pride, strength, hope and resilience across time and generation and resonate in each one of us.

In a world where identity becomes an ebb and flow of multiple and variable interactions, Noirs reflects black identity, the belonging to the roots. The viewer is invited to come closer and to share this intimacy through images that lift the spirit.


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