Alun Be portrays Africa

credits Alun Be

If you take a look at Alun Be’s photography sessions and pictures, you will not see sunny shores, magnificent beaches at sunset or mountainous landscapes. You will mostly catch feelings and emotions through the portrait of a person he chose to show his or her hidden faces.

Alun Be is not a photographer whose goal would be to merely take beautiful and unique pictures of nature, animals and people all over the world. His mission is devoted to the African continent, and the artist wishes to portray Africa and its people in a way that is slightly different from what we usually know.

The Dakar native, born in 1981 in the Senegalese capital city, is yearning to portray African modernity by taking pictures of the ones who make Africa: the elderly and the youngsters, the men and the women, the joyful ones and the shy ones, the down-to-earth ones and the dreamers. But Alioune Ba, who set up his pseudonym Alun Be when he decided to give up architecture for photography, wants more than that: beyond just taking pictures of people and attempting to catch their deep feelings and expressions, the artist is eager to make us see what is always hidden or put apart by our brain.

Alun Be is determined to challenge stereotypes, change our perception by showing us new aspects, new sides and new ways of glancing at someone and revealing the hidden and unexpected details of people’s faces: when we look at a picture, we often expect to see certain things and it tends to reassure us. Alun Be wants to show us what we do not look at and thus forget, the subtle contrasts of one’s face and the undetectable smiles of our African fellows.

The Senegalese artist already exhibited in Milan in 2015, in Dakar (2018) and in Chicago (2018) among other shows. Still hoping to bring Africa and its faces beyond boundaries, and showing people all across the world that stereotypes of poverty and extreme joy which often go with Africans can be overtaken to propose something else.


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