Frida Orupabo

Weather Girl

Frida Orupabo
Weather Girl, 2021
Collage, inkjet prints with paper pins mounted on aluminium, 150 x 110 cm
Collection Fotomuseum Winterthur

© © Frida Orupabo
Norwegian Nigerian artist and sociologist Frida Orupabo creates analogue and digital black-and-white collages and video installations from visual material circulating online. From photographs from the colonial era as well as from contemporary imagery, from ethnography, medicine and science to art and pop culture, Orupabo dissects representations of the Black, mostly female body as a means to negotiate themes of colonial violence, racism, sexuality and belonging. In rearranging and newly assembling the dissected fragments, Orupabo creates figures of resistance that challenge how and what we see in a present-day reality that remains permeated by colonialism.

Orupabos delicate and sculptural collages are pervaded by subtly resistant and emancipatory moments: the direct gaze or the clenched fist; a flying movement, seemingly carefree; or persisting in a graceful, suspended state. The often life-size figures express pride and dignity as they defy and attempt to transform the one-dimensional and violent images of the colonial gaze and its visual legacy. The layering of partially twisted and gender-ambiguous limbs challenges our ways of seeing, assembling into subjects that ask to be recognised in all their complexity, ambivalence and contradiction.