I came across Mambu Bayoh’s work in late 2010, drawn to the vibrant softness and hidden strength of the women captured by his camera. Bayoh is a Sierra Leone/Liberian photographer who came to the United States at a young age, escaping the Liberian civil war. Drawn to the art of photography, Bayoh stopped his pursuit in Law and dedicated his time to his now current passion. His work not only crosses over into high fashion and street fashion, but into social documentation as well.
“My work is journalistic; I capture life as I know or see it. It is also laboring; it’s born out of love passion and inner struggle. I love to capture people. The collective strength of humans is beyond amazing and the determination of an individual is prolific. I’ve been blessed to be on earth for a little amount of its history but I just want to document what I see and hear. To show the human strength, defeat, determination, culture, and resilience.”
Needless to say, Mambu Bayoh’s work is a visual feast and his continuous output of new images assures us that there will always be more to enjoy.
Being from a part of Africa not necessarily known by the general public, it is really important for me to represent not just my country and my people, but also the whole African continent through my work. - Yannis Guibinga
« Resilients » show that lineage is inextinguishable. Clothed with their mothers’s and grandmothers’s ornaments, they reveal legacies. Inheritance. The women revealed in their ancestrality through their photographies, demonstrate the importance of their cultural heritage.
I am a Nigerian currently based in Toronto, Canada. Growing up, I was constantly surrounded by art – my mum is a collector – and so I developed an interest at an early age. There wasn’t a point where I was ever conscious about artists; top painters, photographers, sculptors, etc. I was never aware of the techniques, styles and accompanying messages with the art pieces. There was just a general interest which I expressed earlier on via drawings. Growing up, the thought of a career as an artist wasn’t exactly encouraged beyond primary school and as such, I never sought to advance any skill I might have had – I played around with editing software and cameras in high-school – but there was no backing knowledge. Fast forward to university, and I was reintroduced to the idea of photography by accident (in a sense). In this accident, I also discovered a passion for story-telling, regardless of the medium (as abstract or as straight forward as possible). Over the years, I have taught myself, practiced, studied, stalked the greats, studied some more, and learned how to take somewhat decent photographs. I’m still learning. (see more of William)