by Monica Duboski December 10, 2021 0 Comments
Kingsley’s latest body of work, created for the “Mirror for Two” exhibition, takes complete inspiration from Kingsley’s own experience and observations of social media; particularly Instagram posts and especially those influenced by American culture. He states, “All over the world, on social media, something is happening where everyone wants to be famous.” He continues, “My generation, everyone wants to be good looking…we all want be best version of ourselves.” Paying homage to the Insta aesthetic, Kingsley’s portraits present women, men, children, and families, who, regardless of their particular pose, all seem aware of and beckon to the lens that captures them. On the surface, the subjects of his paintings seem to be steeped in the popular materialism of the day. But so human and vibrant are his paintings, one quickly finds themselves staring into the faces he created, sensing there is something more than what immediately meets the eye.
When pressed on whether his work serves as a critique of the seemingly complete integration of social media into our lives, or of the unique fact that an artist from Cameroon can interpret his Instagram feed as a local community, he instead shares that his work does not serve to judge. In fact, he seems quite optimistic. He tells me that social medial is a “small world that units everybody.” In terms of it’s cultural footprint, he sees social media as having a neutral affect. Kingsley understands the pursuit of displaying one’s best self (no matter how potentially flawed the undertaking it might be) to essentially be a noble effort. He does not endeavor to proclaim whether curated social media personas are shallow or worthy, only to show his subjects as part of something bigger than themselves.
You can find Kingsley’s work on display at Mitochondria Gallery located at 2101 Winter Street, Houston, TX 77007. (Dec 10-11, 2021)
Follow @duboskiartcollab and @kings_pens for updates on future exhibits and print releases.
Photographer credit: Zacharie Ngnogue Instagram: @studioxldouala
Additional photo gallery credit: Instagram @anniekadji.art, Instagram @kings_pens
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