Friday, July 13, 2007

52nd Venice International Art Biennale

photograph courtesy La Biennale

Sunday 10th June – Golden Lion Prize – Malick Sidibe. The prestigious Golden Lion prize for lifetime achievement of the 52nd International Art Biennale went to Malian photographer, Malick Sidibe, he is also the first African and the first photographer to receive the prize. “Operating primarily from a small studio on one of the busiest streets of central Bamako, the capital of Mali, Sibide has been the signal portraitist of his city and nation and the intimate observer of the Malian musical scene. Like August Sander, the great German photographer, he has preserved the likenesses of countless individuals while in the process recording the face of the rapidly changing society they, as citizens, have collectively brought into being.” The Biennale director Robert Storr explains. “For the Biennale Sibide joined forces with the organizers of the project L’Afrique Chante Contre le SIDA to take pictures of contestants in a countrywide competition for singers and song writers who composed and performed in Mali’s various languages designed to provide information about the AIDS disease, its preventions and its treatment. “No African has done more to enhance photography’s stature." Storr concludes.

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