Viviane Sassen

‘Flamboya’ refers to the ‘Flamboyant’ tree which blossoms in December and paints the landscape across East and South Africa with countless deep red-and-orange flowers. Yet, maybe this name constitutes the sole remaining concession and reference to an exotic image of Africa in a body of work that otherwise helps challenge this enduring conception. Shot in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Zambia, the ‘Flamboya’ photographs stand as paradigmatic for Sassen’s new way of looking at Africa – one devoid of sentimentality — that acknowledges the challenges and drawbacks of its complex reality through visual and poetic metaphor.