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Barthélémy Toguo

Galerie Lelong & Co., New York, is pleased to announce representation of Barthélémy Toguo. Represented by the Paris location of the gallery since 2010, Toguo's relationship with the gallery will now extend to New York. Toguo will present his first solo exhibition in New York in ten years, Urban Requiem, at Galerie Lelong & Co. on March 15, 2019.

Born in Cameroon and based in New York, Barthélémy Toguo works across painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, performance, and installation to address enduring and immediately relevant issues of borders, exile, and displacement.  At the core of his practice is the notion of belonging, which stems from his dual French/Cameroonian nationality. Through poetic, hopeful, and often figural gestures connecting nature with the human body, Toguo foregrounds concerns with both ecological and societal implications. Recently, his works have been influenced by global movements and humanitarian tragedies such as #BlackLivesMatter and the refugee crisis. He states, “What guides me is a constantly evolving aesthetic but also a sense of ethics, which makes a difference, and structures my entire approach.”

Toguo regularly transforms ideas into action. In 2008, he founded Bandjoun Station in his native Cameroon to foster contemporary art and culture within the local community. The community center includes an exhibition space, a library, an artist residency, and an organic farm.

Coinciding with Toguo’s show at Lelong will be Perilous Bodies (March 5 – May 11, 2019), a group exhibition that will inaugurate the newly renovated Ford Foundation Center for Social Justice. Curated by Jaishri Abichandani and Natasha Becker, the show will feature Toguo’s installation, Road to Exile (2018).

Toguo’s most notable recent solo exhibition was The Beauty of Our Voice, Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, New York (2018). Toguo was shortlisted for the 2016 Prix Marcel Duchamp and included in the group exhibition of finalists at the Centre Pompidou, Paris. He has participated in numerous international biennials, including the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, India (2018); 56th Venice Biennale (2015); 11th Biennale de Lyon (2011); and Dak’Art Biennale (2010). In 2011, Toguo was made a Knight of the Order of Arts and Literature in France. His works are included in public collections worldwide, including the Tate Modern, England; Centre Pompidou, France; Musée d'art contemporain de Lyon, France; Studio Museum Harlem, New York; and MoMA, New York.

Toguo was born in M’Balmayo, Cameroon, in 1967. He currently lives and works between Paris, France, and Bandjoun, Cameroon.

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