Hi everyone! How are you? I hope you’re fine 😉
I’ve recently spent a month in London with some of you, and there I discovered a lot of picturesque scenarios and visited many intriguing museums. My favourite was the British Museum: have you ever heard anything about it?
It preserves one of the most important and famous historical object, the “Rosetta Stone“: I’m sure all of you understand now why it is so important 🙂
Anyway, I spent all the time contemplating an exhibition of African Art. I had already visited the museum two months earlier and I discovered this delighting section on that occasion. African Art positively struck me: it provoked bold, unexpected and indescribable feelings in me. This is why no sooner had the teachers told me that we would go there, I decided to spend all my the time there in the African galleries.
The galleries transport the visitors in an unusual scenario for no-African citizens made up of past and present aspects of cultural life in Africa. The artifacts come from the entire continent and from different historical periods. Hardly has the visitor arrived there that he is captured by “Man’s Cloth”, which is a recycled metal foil of flattened bottle-neck wrappers fastened together with copper wire. It is a creation of El Anatsui, a professor of Sculpture at the University of Nigeria, who worked on it from 1998 to 2001. He tried to combine in this work the themes of memory and loss.
I was really fascinated by this work of art. What’s more, I also realised that African textiles are strongly linked with African history, religion and economy.
In addition to this work, the galleries hold masquerade, an art of transformation. The masks shown are composed of many different materials, such as cloth, metal, plastic, resin, wood and so on. In these galleries the visitors have also the possibility to admire lots of forged metal artefacts miraculously born from the transformation of rock into metal through fire. The main part of this section, however, is composed of ancient arms and armour.
I absolutely recommend to spend some minutes looking at the “Tree of life“: it was created by a Mozambican artist who, after the civil war that lasted 16 years in his country, decided to use weapons to build this sculpture whose historic importance is invaluable. The “Tree of life” widely, aptly, literally symbolises the dynamic creativity and Africa’s need for revenge.
In conclusion, my feeling is that the African continent can give a great number of opportunities to his citizens. African culture offers an old-fashionable taste which has captured me since the first time I saw it.