Cape Town

21 January - 27 February 2016
Meschac Gaba
Bank or Economy

STEVENSON is pleased to announce Meschac Gaba's fourth solo exhibition with the gallery. Titled Bank or Economy, this is Gaba's first show here since his monumental 12-room installation, Museum of Contemporary African Art, was acquired and exhibited by Tate Modern, London, in 2013.

Gaba will present three new works for this upcoming exhibition, each resembling a market stall stocked with tokens of symbolic value plus a fourth installation also related to trade and exchange. Using found materials like bank notes, coins and semi-precious stones, Gaba will create an environment that plays with the perceptions of value inherent to conventional belief systems of cultural and economic exchange.

Since the late 1990s, Benin-born Gaba has used materials such as flags, hair extensions and devalued and decommissioned coins and bank notes to make installations that disrupt notions of national identity and global market economics. His immersive works, such as the various installations seen in Museum of Contemporary African Art, are interactive and take on a trade and exchange quality that questions the idea of art and how it operates in gallery spaces.

Informed by his experiences growing up in Benin, and living between Cotonou and Rotterdam, Gaba's distinct aesthetic produces related discussions about Africa's position in the global art world, and the manifestations of culture in a global marketplace.

'[Museum of Contemporary African Art is] not a place of accumulation or preservation but rather an open theatre for a different way of looking at the world that refuses to deny the sanctity of excess and be reduced to the utilitarian values of global economics or classical modes of representation.' - Samson Kambalu, The Museum and the Individual

Bank or Economy will coincide with the Cape Town Art Fair (19-21 February 2016), where Gaba's Globalloon will be shown as a special project. Critiquing globalisation and national solidarity, this large inflated balloon combines the flags of every nation in the world and is an extension of Gaba's Citoyen du Monde, shown at Stevenson Cape Town in 2013.

The exhibition opens on Thursday 21 January 2016, from 6pm to 8pm.

The gallery is open from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, and Saturday from 10am to 1pm.