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Omar Viktor Diop

Updated: Mar 1, 2019

Artist 69

Omar Viktor Diop Diaspora Self Portraits 2014

Omar Viktor Diop is a Senegalese photographer and he was born in Dakar in 1980. His body of work includes Fine Arts and Fashion Photography as well as Advertising Photography. He enjoys mixing his photography with other forms of art, such as costume design, styling and creative writing.

His work is interrogative and intriguing, prospective, yet a tad vintage and draws inspiration from Diop's international uplifting, as well as his african visual heritage.

In today’s focus is on his project Diaspora, Diop reinterprets portraits of famous Africans made between the 15th and 19th centuries

Identity and discovery–at both the collective and personal levels–are themes in the forefront of this Project Diaspora. A journey through time, the photographic series delves into and exposes less spoken narratives of the role of Africans out of Africa, between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries

Using portraits of notable Africans in European history as his inspiration, Diop pits their life-journeys and legacies with those of his own, and further defining his intrigue of the singular destinies of travellers and those in alien environments.

Choosing, for the first time, to use himself as object in his artwork, he has delved into the realities of being both narrator and character. This forces him to face his insecurities head on, and uses references to sport, football in particular, to show the duality of living a life of glory and recognition, while facing the challenges of being “other”.

Paradoxes he finds are shared between modern day footballers in Europe and the men of the original portraits depicted in his self-portraits.

Placing yourself as the model brings a connection to the past with the present. I think in a world where history has been white washed consistently rediscovering historic figures is of such importance.

Please follow the links to Omar Viktor Diop’s website where you can read each story.


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