1 December 2016

Senegal: Renowned Senegalese Sculptor Ousmane Sow Dies At 81

Photo: Ousmane Sow
Ousmane Sow.

Inspired by Leni Riefenstahl's photographs of the Nuba people, Ousmane Sow left behind a career in physiotherapy for art. He became the first African to be elected a member of France's renowned Academie des Beaux-Arts.

The Cape Town Fringe Festival showcases South Africa's fresh and emerging talent, in new productions and modern classics. With biting satire and social comment, this arts event seeks to reach out to non-theatergoers.

Senegalese sculptor Ousmane Sow died on Thursday at the age of 81, his family told AFP news agency.

"With his death, he leaves behind dreams and projects that his tired self could not carry out," his family said.

Born in Dakar in 1935, Sow held his first exhibition in 1987 in the Senegalese capital - his hometown - organized by the French cultural center.

For more than 20 years, he worked as a physiotherapist in and around Paris and Dakar before changing his career in the 1980s.

His most recognized work was a series of life-size sculptures of Nuba wrestlers inspired by the photographs of German film director Leni Riefenstahl.

He also completed sculptures of the Maasai, a tribe in Kenya and Tanzania, as well as the Zulu of South Africa.

Sow became the first African to be named a member of France's prestigious Academie des Beaux-Arts, being elected as a foreign associate in 2012.

His sculptures have been displayed across the globe, including 1992's edition of documenta IX, which takes place once every five years, and the Whitney Museum in New York.

Senegalese Minister for Culture Mgabnick Ndiaye said that Sow's passing was "a very great loss for Senegalese and African sculpture" and that "the works of art that he exhibited worldwide show that he was a giant of culture."

Senegal

Early Warnings, Late Response to Senegal's Food Crisis

Signs that 2018 would be tough on herders appeared more than a year ago Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2016 Deutsche Welle. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.