Ibrahim Mahama: An Interview

Video Data Bank

2019 | 01:03:45 | United States | English | Color | Stereo | 16:9 | HD video

Collection: Interviews, On Art and Artists

Tags: Installation, Interview, Sculpture, VDB Interviews, Visiting Artists Program

Born in 1987, Ibrahim Mahama is an artist and author who creates monumental installations out of materials originating from Ghana, Mahama's home. Described in The Guardian as "a junkyard utopian", he investigates the conditions of supply and demand in African markets, often making work with materials like cocoa and jute sacks. He and Daniel Eisenberg, a Chicago-based filmmaker and professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, talk about Mahama’s work and the importance of showing art in the places where its materials are sourced from, as well as the artist's relationship to his home.

"Many of the things that Mahama gleefully collects from scrap dealers, school teachers and railway managers carry the sweat, grease, smells and even hopes of the past...It is as though he’s uprooted the colonial infrastructure and returned it to the land of the oppressors."

— Stuart Jeffries, 'People think I'm very odd': how Ibrahim Mahama brought Ghana's past to Manchester, The Guardian, July 2019

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