M’Pambu Bodo Bodo, aka Bodo Fils (in honour of his father, the artist Pierre Bodo, under whose instruction he developed as a painter), is also a writer, composer and musician. He achieved international acclaim as an artist for his fusion of surrealist and realist influences in full-body depictions of sapeurs. Bodo uses his allegorical portraits to articulate the aspirations of Congolese youth, whose ambitions belie their material circumstances. His new series for ART X Lagos features hybrid beings with animal heads specific to their character, in recognition of the individuality of each sapeur and in reference to the clan or ancestral land whose totem each animal embodies. These works are representative of Bodo’s practice of contrasting western markers of success with the depictions of animals as patriotic symbols in Africa.
Bodo’s work is in the Pigozzi Collection, Geneva. His most recent solo exhibition was Songeries Congolaises, La Ferronnerie, France, 2018.