Jens Hoffmann, Z.S. Strother, Detroit, 2018.
Hardcover, 128 pp., 250 illustrations, 10 1/2 x 9 1/2 inches.
MAY 1968 as a performance, effectively giving birth to himself as a work of art. His artistic practice weaves together African animism, European mysticism, and socio-political activism with humor, irony, and contradiction. He uses his identity as a White African like a key to unlock and critique our understanding and reading of history, art, and language. This book, which focuses on his works created between 1988 and the present, looks at the influence of avant-garde traditions from Dada and Surrealism to Punk, intertwined with the powerful legacy of traditional African art on his work. Spiritually charged, politically poignant, and socially engaged, the work cannot be categorized as either European or African, but is rather a prolonged metaphysical dialogue between cultures, archetypal signs, and sacred symbols. Included are works in a diversity of media, including painting, sculpture, performance, photography, installation, and conceptual art.