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October Gallery hosts an exhibition of the works of Romuald Hazoume

The October Gallery in Holbourn has recently opened a new exhibition from Romuald Hazoume, the African artist. Hazoume is one of the most known contemporary artists in in Africa and this is not the first time that his work has been featured in the gallery.

The exhibition is called Cargoland and it is most notable for two of its installations which are on a large scale. These two installations are each about five meters across and are called Water Cargo and Petrol Cargo. The installation features scooters which are often used in Benin, the artist’s hometown, in order to transport petrol.

The work certainly represents the artists cultural heritage and there are elements involved in the work that have certainly been seen before – such as his famous masks. In this exhibition he has created African style masks that have been made from petrol cans although still stay true in many ways to their original forms.

This is not the first time that the artist has used petrol cans in his work and one of his most famous pieces uses them famously. This work of art is the slave ship model that he created from petrol cans – using a total of more than 300. This work is currently owned by the British Musuem.

The artist has commented that he enjoys using masks in his artwork because they have such an incredible amount of mystery about them. He has said, “For me masks are not about art, they are about people. I don’t see my works as pieces of deformed plastic, I see them as people and this is what I think makes the work so interesting.

I also like giving hair to these plastic masks as this is such an important element of the culture and from it you can tell so much about a person.”

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