Mbikayi, Maurice
Born in 1974, in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo. Lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa
Maurice Mbikayi’s work unpacks ideas around contemporary technology, and the impact of electronic waste on African populations. Mbikayi’s interest is twofold: technological advancement is weighed up against its detriment to populations, landscapes, and economies. Mbikayi collects what he refers to as “remnants” – discarded computer parts and detritus – incorporating them into his collages, drawings, sculptures, and performances. Some of Mbikayi’s sculptures are made wearable, becoming outfits for public or filmed performances. Across these spaces, Mbikayi stages his “prosthetic identity”. His photographs and performances represent his anxieties about the virtual world, while register the vulnerabilities of those exposed to mining for natural resources and the dumping of e-waste on African soil. Mbikayi was nominated for the Luxembourg Art Prize in 2016. His works have been widely presented in exhibitions at Gallery MOMO, Johannesburg (2016); the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, Grand Rapids (2014); Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town (2015); and Centre Culturel - Théâtre des Mazades, Toulouse (2011).
Maurice Mbikayi, Mulami Mushidimuka (The modern shepherd), 2016, C-print, 90 x 200 cm / 35 x 79 in, Edition of 5, Courtesy Officine dell’Immagine