Ibrahim Ballo’s creative approach comes through woven paintings inspired by the women of his community in the rural Sénoufo region of Mali, who weave cotton for clothing. His masked subjects engage a reflection on identities while stretching the concept. Associated with the knotted threads, the networks of lines drawn in acrylic intersect creating a multitude of junction points.
Carrying a story on several levels, cotton conveys – with its symbolic motifs – stories of circulation, migration and appropriation. Ballo subtly evokes oppression, marginalisation and inequality. In L’Esprit Bavard (The Talkative Spirit) Ballo highlights the voices of those so often ignored. Since 2019, denim, very present in Mali, has allowed him to unfold stories that intersect, bind, influence, challenge and respond to each other. The artist, who was Abdoulaye Konaté’s student, always experiments according to his desires.