The exhibition Algiers, Archipelago of Freedoms bridges different revolutionary periods from the African continent’s past and present.
It brings together fifteen or so artists whose reflections draw on memories of African struggles, and recounts revolutionary paths from iconic to little-known, which have forged personal and collective narratives, both historical and fictional.
Its starting point is Algiers, and more broadly Algeria, which has seen two periods in its history synonymous with the drive for the emancipation of peoples: the postcolonial period of the 1970s, when different revolutionary movements from African countries, Europe and the Americas were drawn to Algiers; and more recently, in 2019, when an unexpected national revolt was stirred up, known as the “Revolution of Smiles” for its pacifist nature.
Algiers is only a recent example of what Africa is experiencing in terms of the drive for social and political change. Following the example of independence and revolutionary movements that emerged in Africa in the 1950s—which furthermore found refuge in Algiers—since 2011, endogenous revolutions and revolts are being witnessed, led by a new generation; in them, the virtual sphere and social movements accompany the reappropriation of public space, streets and squares. They are striving for individual and collective freedoms, political reforms, better social and working conditions—and in particular call for a change of regime, an end to corruption and injustice. While the revolutions of the past decade do not bear the ideology of an African union, they nevertheless align with those of the 1950s in terms of the drive for the emancipation of peoples.
Frac Centre-Val de Loire
88 rue du Colombier
(entrée boulevard Rocheplatte)
45000 Orléans, France
T. + 33 (0)2 38 62 52 00