Longetti - Layered in Love: Musings on Love’s Palpability in Some Sahelian and West African Art Forms

Layered in Love: Musings on Love’s Palpability in Some Sahelian and West African Art Forms

Genevieve Hyacinthe

Hyacinthe’s personal essay, Layered in Love: Musings on Love’s Palpability in Some Sahelian and West African Art Forms, muses on how some art forms can make the feeling of love palpable. Focusing on Seydou Keita’s Untitled (c. 1958), a photograph of a young woman and a suitor with a guitar, Henri Matisse’s La Musique (1939), and Sounou (2004), a series of still shots from a video depicting the Malian dance form Sounou, Hyacinthe explores how these works of art create a space that is ”warmed and secured like a tight hug from a lover.” She analyses the use of earth toned colors, musical instruments, interior design and patterns, the graininess of still photography, prayer mats and rugs, and the flirtatious movements of Malian dancers. Furthermore, her essay includes an analysis of the experimental Senegalese film Touki Bouki (1973) directed by Djibril Diop Mambéty – a romantic tale of two revolutionary lovers riding on a motorcycle.

Published: Feb 2019