Hank Willis Thomas | USA

A Place to Call Home (Africa – America), 2009

Polished aluminum with powdered coat
168x203 cm

Courtesy of Goodman Gallery, Cape Town

The connection between America and Africa in Hank Willis Thomas’ works begins in the period when Africa served as a stockpile of slaves for the New World, whose demand for labor brought about human trafficking and a disastrous harm to the social fabric of the tribes and black communities of Africa. The artist reconnects the two continents through a position that reexamines the racial narrative common in the “developed” societies’ worldviews in opposition with the "undeveloped" societies.

The black map Willis presents connects Africa to the bellybutton of America, and tries to link past geopolitical facts with the contemporary parallel reality.