Pieter Hugo's Nollywood

The ghost of the Emperor Haile Selassie meets Idi Amin, Charlie's Angels do Rambo Foxy-Brown-style, David Lynch's Lost Highway snakes through Lagos, Ghostface Killah mutates into Fela's 'Zombie', and Dracula gives way for Blacula. Voodoo, hoodoo, and mambo are mashed up with Igbo rituals. Ahhwooooo . . . Werewolves of Lagos. - Stacy Hardy

Art Exhibition previously on at IMA - Institute of Modern Art in Brisbane precinct, Queensland, Australia.
From Saturday 25 September 2010 to Saturday 20 November 2010
Launch Wednesday 29 September 2010, 5–7pm

Pieter Hugo Princess Adaobi, Enugu, Nigeria 2008. image Pieter Hugo Azuka Adindu, Enugu, Nigeria 2008. image Pieter Hugo Emeka Uzzi, Enugu, Nigeria 2009. image Pieter Hugo Escort Kama, Enugu, Nigeria 2008. image Pieter Hugo Kelechi Nwanyeali, Engugu, Nigeria 2009. image Pieter Hugo Linus Okereke, Enugu, Nigeria 2008. image

Published by Institute of Modern Art on Tuesday 29 June 2010.
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They say Nollywood is the third largest film industry in the world, releasing onto the local home-video market up to a thousand titles a year. Such productivity is only possible because the movies are made in conditions that would make western filmmakers cringe. Produced and marketed in the space of a week, they use low-cost equipment, basic scripts, actors cast the day of the shooting, and real locations. While drawing on genres and typologies drawn from Hollywood, Nollywood movies are a rare instance of mass-media self-representation. The stories-including tales of romance, comedy, witchcraft, bribery, and prostitution-speak to the experiences and values of their local audiences. The narratives are overdramatic, and deprived of happy endings. The aesthetic is loud, violent, excessive; nothing is said, everything is shouted.

South African photographer Pieter Hugo became intrigued by Nollywood’s fictional worlds, where the everyday and the unreal intertwine. He asked a team of actors and assistants to recreate Nollywood myths and symbols as if they were on movie sets and photographed them. The resulting images recreate the stereotypical characters that typify Nollywood productions, including mummies, satanic demons, and zombies, all casually posed in the backlots of Enugu.

Thanks to Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide, and Michael Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town.