(...for the black phoenix shall rise), 2017



EUR 18,000 + VAT


(…for the black phoenix shall rise), 2017


Appliqué technique, hand-stitched cotton on the cotton NFC tag

200 × 200 cm


About this work


This is typical of a series in which de Medeiros digitally combines his own drawings with pictograms and symbols from the internet or video games, and then sends the designs to be executed by Beninese artisans using pieces of colored fabric in the manner of the royal hangings of Dahomey. Near Field Communication (NFC) tags hidden in the works send messages to viewers’ phones when they are held close to the fabric. A historic medium becomes the vehicle for cryptic post-modern narratives – often hinted at by mysterious sub-titles, though the reference to black power seems relatively straightforward here. 


Emo de Medeiros (born Benin 1979) lives and works between Paris, France, and Cotonou, Benin, using a dizzying array of media across sculpture, video, electronic music, photography, performance, painting, and textiles.  His practice focuses on the transcultural nature of the postcolonial, globalized, and digitalized world, mixing the traditional, technological, and semiological to probe the changing roles of origin, place, identity, and culture. The Surtentures series does this through the appliqué fabric technique characteristic of the court art of the kingdom of Dahomey (now the Republic of Benin) from the 18-19th centuries.