With the exhibition, christened 'Being, Seeing, Wandering', the internationally renowned photographer and author, who has lived and worked in Berlin since 1991, wanders through the world's metropolises/Photo: AfricanCourierMedia

Awarded Nigerian photographer holds exhibition in Berlin

The photographer and author Akinbode Akinbiyi (78) has been awarded the prestigious Hannah Höch Prize 2024 for his outstanding artistic life’s work.

The prize, awarded by the Cultural Administration of the Berlin Senate since 1996, honours artists who live and work in Berlin and who stand out for their continuous artistic achievements. The prize is endowed with 25,000 euros and includes an exhibition and a publication.

With around 120 photographs, Akinbiyi’s exhibition, holding from 8 June to 14 October at the Berlinische Galerie, provides insights into the artist’s five decades of work.

Akinbode Akinbiyi was born in Oxford, England, in 1946 to Nigerian parents. He grew up in England and in Nigeria. After studying literature and English at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, he moved to Germany in the 1970s to do a PhD in literature at the University of Heidelberg. And he stayed on/Photo: Screenshot/ I WONDER AS A WANDER

With the exhibition, christened ‘Being, Seeing, Wandering’, the internationally renowned photographer and author, who has lived and worked in Berlin since 1991, wanders through the world’s metropolises -Berlin, Brasília, Durban, Lagos; the urban space is his workplace. A place that he perceives as a ‘boundless labyrinth’, ‘a maze of never-ending streets, flowing together in countless paths’, as he put it in 2009.

Akinbiyi photographs what he observes, analogue and predominantly in black and white. His images are nuanced visual metaphors that thematise social change and social exclusion as well as the political, social and architectural consequences of colonialism. With his photographs, he conveys a view of the world that goes beyond stereotypical and therefore discriminatory depictions.

Akinbiyi sees photography as ‘a visual form of writing’. His pictures are not staged; instead, he observes, expects and discovers the serendipity of the moment in front of the lens of his analogue camera, the Rolleiflex.

Akinbiyi photographs what he observes, analogue and predominantly in black and white. His images are nuanced visual metaphors that thematise social change and social exclusion as well as the political, social and architectural consequences of colonialism/Photo: AfricanCourierMedia

Akinbode Akinbiyi has lived in Berlin since 1991 and works as a photographer, author, teacher, mentor and curator. Born in Oxford in 1946 to Nigerian parents, Akinbiyi grew up in England and Lagos, Nigeria. After studying literature and English at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, he moved to Germany in the 1970s to do a PhD in literature at the University of Heidelberg. And he stayed on.

Akinbiyi was awarded Germany’s national honour, the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (Verdienstorden der Bundesrepublik Deutschland) by President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on 1 October 2021 to mark the German Unity Day. The honour, also known as the Bundesverdienstkreuz, is awarded for special achievements in the political, economic, cultural, intellectual or humanitarian fields.

Exhibition: Being, Seeing, Wandering by Akinbode Akinbiyi
Date: 8.6.2024 – 14.10.2024
Venue: Berlinische Galerie, Landesmuseum für Moderne Kunst, Fotografie und Architektur, Alte Jakobstraße 124 – 128, 10969 Berlin
Website: https://berlinischegalerie.de/ausstellungen/vorschau/akinbode-akinbiyi

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