From 1948 to 1962, self-taught Seydou Keïta ran Bamako’s most famous photography studio. Owing to the quality of his prints and the sophistication of his portraits, Keïta quickly gained fame in Mali and throughout West Africa. His pictures distinguished themselves by their framing, their lighting, the models’ look, the position of their arms and hands, along with the use of varied backgrounds. Keïta closed his studio in 1962, to become an official photographer of the Malian government.
Keïta’s work has been exhibited widely and numerous solo exhibitions of his works have been held, in institutions such as Le Grand Palais, Paris (2016); Tate Modern, London (2008); Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland (2007); Bennington Museum, The University of Connecticut (2003); Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, Rome (2001); Saint Louis Museum of Art (1998) and Museum of Modern Art of San Francisco (1997).