CAMOUFLAGES: Steve Bandoma
Intrepid activism remains at the core of this vibrant series by Steve Bandoma. True to form, the contorted and disrupted human figures emblazoned with consumerist and hedonistic motifs prevail at the centre of his visual compositions.
The use of recognizable yet monstrous human form serves to imbue empathy on the striking socio-political issues addressed within his work. Referring to the Democratic Republic of Congo as a “vaguely disguised war zone”, Bandoma seeks to depict the gust of underbelly terrorism further consolidated during electoral periods a timely subject given that 2020 will reveal itself to be a very trepidatious election year for many Sub Saharan African nations in the midst of a pandemic.
With distinctive brushstrokes, serendipitous splatters of paint mixed with ink dribbles, Bandoma’s poignant painterly gestures succinctly capture the anarchy and the instability he discusses regarding his home city of Kinshasa. All these elements combined with a mixed media approach on paper entirely underscore the artist’s omen of an existing self-destructive age. These efforts to project a largely significant narrative are complemented with Steve Bandoma’s intuitive use of colour texture and symbolism bright magentas, iconoclast logos and flesh-toned beastly caricatures with human limbs all form a monolith of beauty and chaos.
Steve Bandoma continues to meaningfully challenge the viewer through his ability to create emphasis on a dystopian future while capturing some historical perspective juxtaposing the past and the present.