Xenson | Uganda
“I am inspired by African culture that cuts across all tribal spectrums, craftsmanship, and authenticity to create modern sustainable contemporary African and new media art.”
Xenson (Samson Ssenkaaba) was born in 1976 in Uganda where he still currently lives and works.
He graduated with first-class honors in painting and Graphic Design from the Margaret Trowell School of Industrial and Fine Arts at Makerere University in 1999.
Xenson is a multi-media artist who interrogates contemporary issues through a synergy of installations, videos, performance, poetry, fashion, and paintings. His work explores the concepts of identity and global circulation of culture against the contextual background of pre and postcolonial history and humanity’s obsessive tendency to hide behind facades, visible or invisible by intentionally creating a perceived aesthetic of flowers, patterning bright colors and masks around his otherwise unsettling subject matter; a phenomenon he calls ‘Obscured Identities’. The resulting visual narrative is a reflection of the complexity of contemporary culture and the preservation of memory.
He also works with used cans and recycled materials in an attempt to clean up his environment and avoid the dystopian futures he portrays through his works. The use of recycled and found materials is his commentary on damping and environmental protection discourse.
His work is widely collected in many private and public collections including the Scottish museum and Minneapolis museum of art.
Selected Solo Exhibitions
GunflowerMask, Afriart gallery on the Seventh, Kampala, Uganda
Pro Afro, Afriart Gallery, Kampala, Uganda
Baroque Afrique, Village Mall, Kampala, Uganda
Futuristic Past, Serena Hotel Kampala, Uganda
Art wa Xenson, Oberpfalzer Kunstlerhaus 11 Schwandorf, Germany.
FashionArtPoetryGraffiti, Alliance Francaise Kampala, Uganda
KikumiKikumi, Uganda Germany Cultural Centre, Kampala, Uganda
Kalicuwalekalafulu, Uganda Germany Cultural Centre, Kampala, Uganda
Selected Group Exhibitions
Art transposition, Kampala, Uganda; Nairobi, Kenya; Hamburg, Germany, LKB/G Gallery, Hamburg Germany
Fringe of Documenta (Kampala contemporary), Kassel, Germany
Chombo Troppe “Jitta Collective (Multimedia collaborative production), Dusseldorf, Colone; Germany; Kampala, Uganda; Nairobi, Kenya
Kampala Contemporary, Circle Art Agency, Nairobi, Kenya
Kabbo Ka Muwala, Makerere Art Gallery, Zimbabwe; Uganda; Germany
Simuda Nyuma, Framer Framed, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Lubare and the boat, Devron Art Center, Huntly, Scotland
Africa Now: Fashioning Personhood- Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis, USA
Garbage Collectors Uganda Museum, Kampala, Uganda
10 Years of Afriart Gallery, Afriart Gallery, Kampala, Uganda