Thonton Kabeya

La Rumba Rosa

28.04.22 > 25.06.22

“My work is the reflection of my joy”.

A step to the side by the artist Thonton Kabeya, a hip movement sweeps away problems, a fantastic rhythm makes you want to dance the Rumba Rosa. Thonton Kabeya explores the universe of dance practiced in the Republic of Congo and the African origins of many global dance phenomena – dance as an escape, a problem-solver, a cultural phenomenon to bring people together. More than a dance punctuated by music, la Rumba Rosa is poetry, the art of living with others, the art of being a sapeur*, the art of smiling at life. Thonton’s art brings together all communities – straight, gay, lesbian, children, parents, grandparents, women, men; the tempo invites us to accept differences and to dance together. “African artists are often led to give a negative image of Africa, with its political conflicts, corruption, inequality, exploitation. Africa is, however, above all else, the joy of living, music, dance, the sun, the pleasure of sharing exhilarating parentheses together. This is the Rumba Rosa! and I like to see that my work reflects joy.”

A Congolese artist based in Johannesburg since 2014, Thonton Kabeya cultivates his inner paradise through painting. The imprint of newspaper ink bursts with vivid colors in this series presented by Bonne Espérance Gallery; scenes full of life, punctuated by the sophisticated lines of the sapeurs* carried away by la Rumba Rosa.

*SAPE Société des ambianceurs et des personnes élégantes, mouvement originaire du Congo