A symphony of colours, a wide deep research through symbol and essence, this is the path Abdoulaye Konaté is crossing in his latest works. It’s impossible to look at his artworks remaining emotionless. Konaté’s joyful compositions bring us in a universe filled with symbols, in an atmosphere charged of significances. Even if the political issue is cast aside, his language is unchanged, always strong, substantial, stripped of every unfoundamental decoration, forged to speak of Human and Nature through a simple medium, such as the colour. The language of colours is made of extrinsic impressions but also internal affections. Following the Islamic culture there’s this liminal faculty, proper of the soul, that intermediates the perceptions between the external and the unintelligible world. The colours are the words of living nature that allow communications but also interpretations. Three colours first: white, black and red. Magnetar poles connecting the inner substance of every ancient symbolism about colours. In Africa the colour is a religious symbol, full of signifiances and power.
The antithesis of black and white, darkness and light, the absence and the knowledge, the earth and the sky is always balanced with the brightful red, the blood flowing in every human being.
«Different dying as medium for knowing the other and for acting on him. The colours have the role of enhance the energy or power of either textile and individual». In Africa white is the colour of the dead, but his function is to “defy” death, a good omen. Black is the chaos, is the origin, but being origin means being cradle of generation, cradle of possibilities, nest of fertility. Red is power, is blood and its overflowing life. It is the
symbolic pulse of every existence, memory of tribal sacrifices and prophecies.
Some hints on Abdoulaye Konaté’s chromatic world can be experienced following the path of two different African countries towards independence. These steps unveil coloured consistency and substance through National flags.
Liberty and union have been symbolized for the first time in Ghana national flag in 1958 with a black star laying on three “panafrican colours”: red, yellow, green (same colours as the Malian flag and other National flags in Africa).
Colors that are so important in Abdoulaye Konaté creations. Black as liberty. Red as required sacrifice to independence. Yellow as sun and prosperity. Green as nature and hope.
Following this symbolic path of colours on African flags, in 1994 in South Africa, the current flag was chosen to represent the country’s new democracy after the end of Apartheid. This flag adds blue and white to the other four colours. Blue as sea and rivers. Blu as water, medium for life and white for peace and justice.
Deepening our research through Konaté colours, yellow recalls also the golden desert, the Sahel, a strip of land runnig across Africa that marks every man living there.
Rather than evading from the African colourism, Abdoulaye Konaté blissfully embraces this world pigmentation, unveiling for us a wide Baudelairian universe.
The syncretism of symbols, the disclosed synesthesia, the unwavering chromatic seduction, all competing in a playful experience for the spectator, bringing him in a textile world full of allegories related by materials, density of colours, rhytm and vital impulses.
Color is only one of the infinite enchanted symbols in Abdoulaye Konaté’s universe.