THE SERPENTINE NORTH art gallery is housed in what was once a gunpowder store, built in 1805. Next to it, there is an elegantly curvaceous café created by the Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid (1950-2016). Until the 3rd of September 2023, there is an interesting exhibit behind the north side of the café. It is an abstract mural of brightly coloured, differently sized rectangles and squares. When I showed a photograph of this to our daughter, she said it reminded her of African printed textiles. Maybe, this should not be surprising suggestions because the mural was painted by a Ghanaian artist, Atta Kwami (1956-2021), who was born in Accra.
The mural, painted on wood, is titled “Dzidzɔ kple amenuveve”, which means ‘Joy and Grace’.
The Serpentine’s website noted:
“Its title is in Ewe, a West African language spoken by Kwami, and its composition characteristically plays with the colour and form improvisations distinctive to Ghanaian architecture and strip-woven textiles found across the African continent, especially kente cloth from the Ewe and Asante people of Ghana.”
Sadly, the mural is the last public work that Atta Kwami created. He died in the UK shortly after he completed it.