Dogon, World Cultural Heritage from Africa –Bonn, Germany 2011
In 1989, UNESCO included both, the natural and the cultural heritage of the Dogon – the Bandiagara Cliff in Mali and the unique traditions of the Dogon – in the World Heritage List. At the Bundeskunsthalle in Bonn in 2011, more than 270 of the most beautiful objects from the region were exhibited providing a breath-taking introduction to Dogon aesthetics. In addition to a large number of wood statues, the exhibition showcased almost 30 different masks, as well as a selection of everyday objects and metal jewelry.
The Dogon Culture
The area known as Dogon Country is situated in the South-East of the Republic of Mali, not far from the border of Burkina Faso. It is characterized by the spectacular Bandiagara escarpment, a sandstone cliff stretching from South to Northeast. Dogon Country is a part of the Sahel zone, the Southern fringe of the Sahara Desert.
The 2011 exhibition also addressed the subject of colonialism and its lasting legacy and shed light on the first encounter between the Dogon and European explorers. It provided visitors with the opportunity to engage with the Africa that gave rise to the exquisite works and offers an insight into the world of the Dogon today.
The huge collection of sculptures was accompanied by extensive information on anthropological and geopolitical developments throughout the last two centuries. In order to have a pure and undisturbed view on the impressive sculptures, the exhibition’s floor plan was split in two parts along „circulating“ walls –with the information booths on the left side, and the open sculptural presentation on the right. This structured and organized approach gave the opportunity to focus on either, without getting distracted by people or school classes gathering and reading in front of the sculptures.
- Name: Dogon, World Cultural Heritage from Africa
- Year: 2011
- Location: Bonn, Kunsthalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland
- Size: 1400 m²
- Client: Bundeskunsthalle
- Project Scope: Exhibition Design, Corporate Design, Project Management