Hervé Youmbi

Hervé Gabriel Ngamago Youmbi, born in Bangui (Central African Republic) on March 25, 1973, is a Cameroonian artist who lives and works in Douala. He is a founding member of the Cercle Kapsiki, a collective of five Cameroonian artists, founded in 1998.

Cameroonian artist

Hervé Youmbi

Hervé Youmbi
Born 1973

Nationality Cameroon

. . . Hervé Youmbi . . .

Portraits of five Cameroonian politicians who, in different historical periods, fought and died for the independence

Hervé Youmbi has a diploma from the Institut de Formation Artistique (IFA) in Mbalmayo, Cameroon. He also studied at the École Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs de Strasbourg (France) from October 2000 to June 2001. He teaches art at several towns in Cameroon, at the art institutes of Nkongsamba and Foumban, and in the art academies and universities of Douala and Dschang.

Portraiture is the basis of Hervé Youmbi’s work. Through a close study of the human body in an urban setting, he asks questions about his city, the towns where he has stayed, those he passes through and dreams about getting to know. These are his sources of inspiration and artistic expression. In 2010, he explores the impact of global capitalism on the contemporary arts in Africa with his multimedia installation Ces totems qui hantent la mémoire des fils de Mamadou (These totems who haunt the memory of the son of Mamadou). The photography triptych Au nom du père, du fils et de la sainte monarchie constitutionnelle (In the name of the father, the son and the holy constitutional monarchy) rises up in 2012 against the violence of the dictatorial regimes in Africa. His installation Visages de masques presented at Bandjoun Station (Cameroon) looks at the impact of colonization on the making of ritual masks in Africa during the era of globalization. The treatment of historical subjects has occupied an important place in his work, through works like Cameroonian heroes, presented during SUD 2007 in Douala, tribute to the first Cameroonian resistance against German colonization.

Hervé Youmbi received the Cultures France scholarship awarding an artist visa in 2009 and the Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship 2012 from the Smithsonian in Washington DC, USA. His works are in some leading collections, such as the World Bank and the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in Washington. Recently, one of his pieces was acquired by the Royal Ontario Museum in Canada.

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. . . Hervé Youmbi . . .

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