Nathalie Mba BIKORO


Nathalie Mba BIKORO, Gabon/France


Lives works in Berlin.

Bikoro is an interdisciplinary artist whose works develop projects between communities and collecting fractured narratives for social change through identity, memory, dialogue, history and multi-lingualisms. Her interdisciplinary practices incorporate a synthesis of collaborative engagements, international community dialogue, body politics and development across continents through a merging of creative practices in live art performance, sound & vocal art, film, literature & museum archives, body art, installation and mixed visual media. Her practice derive from developing a creative language through cancer physio-therapies in her personal battle with Leukaemia cancer throughout the 90's.

Her critical creative practices are informed by discourses of histories, archives and theories on postcolonialism, diaspora, migration, identities, afro & alter modernism and culture. Her work reveals and creates moments of synthesis and harmony between seemingly disparate, bodies of knowledge, cultural traditions and value systems. An exploration of creolised identity, heritage, memory and homeland, the artist investigates colonial past, tyranny, dictates of gender, traditions and mythologies. With her approach both educative and allegorical, Nathalie Mba Bikoro highlights the different tones of a society shared between delusions and rituals where self-accomplishment depends on the ability to choose. She is the Neo-Griot for infinite times & spaces.

Creating a diverse new series of exploratory imagery, she investigates often the creolisation of identities which comment on the fractured senses of the human condition, its constructions and interrogates counter-historical narratives of speculative futures, their landscapes and of the geopolitical imaginary. The stories ironise or break the spells of ‘otherness’ by reconfiguring the map of the sensible by interfering with the functionality of gestures and rhythms adapted to the natural cycle of production, reproduction and submission, through the use of photography pushing its process into printmaking and etching.

Her experiences of inter and cross-continental migrations developed her sensibility to cross-interculturalism and to a plurality of language which she explores in her interest to deconstructing and re-constructing mythologies of both past and present. In these labours, the narratives investigate the eternal returns of historical and visual stereotypes throughout art history and how these influence our current societies and interactions. It does not aim to resolve the colonial contexts, however bends over towards the legacy of celebrating voice and cultural identity challenging conceptions of origin, authenticity and the ritual by exposing the nuances of the political that remain bold and fragile.

Nathalie Mba Bikoro is an Associate Lecturer in Philosophy & the Arts and contributes regularly to seminar workshops internationally. She is curator of exhibitions supporting emerging artists (Art Lab Open The Gate London) and director of DNA Arts Foundation in Gabon, a free space for education, arts and culture. She often contributes to academic publications, her latest published for a Norwegian publication titled "How To Conjugate? Apoptosis of Identityhaned Tongues and Drexciyan Moves in African Diasporic Narratives Futures. Re-Experiencing idenity with Resonances of Form-Ideas Between Tradition & Modernity".

She has exhibited internationally including Washington's National Museum of African Arts (2013), Cutlog New York (2013), Perpendicular Brazil (2011), African Heritage London (2010), Museum Africa Johannesburg South Africa (2011), SAVVY Contemporary Gallery Berlin (2011), EPAF11 Warsaw (2011), amongst many others. Her works have featured in Senegal´s Dak´Art Biennale 10th edition (2012) winning 2 international arts awards including Afrique Soleil Bamako Mali and Fondation Blachere France. 

Public Talks include 'A gaze through the lens of Contemporary African Performance' South London Gallery (2011), LAPsody 3rd International Conference & Festival for Live Art and Performance Studies at the Theatre Academy Helsinki (2011), Greenwich International Post-Graduate Research Conference (2008-2011), amongst many others.