Filipe Branquinho (born 1977, Maputo) studied in architecture and follows a dual career as a photographer and illustrator.
Filipe Branquinho’s aesthetic is inspired by his architectural training and by the mozambican school of photography where growing up among big names of mozambican photography such as Ricardo Rangel, Kok Nam and José Cabral proved paramount.
In a project now underway entitled “Lipiko”, in which he uses mapiko masks of the Maconde tradition , he associates drawing and photography with a strong sense of satire to propose a reflection on aspects and values of contemporary national affairs.
From the colonial period to post-socialism, Mapiko’s performance, a traditional initiation rite, allows the expression of an invisible magic world but also of social criticisms and staged identities. These Mapiko masks can be, traditionally, caricatures of characters of a magical (imaginary) world or real known characters from the community or region.
In the previous series there have been several photographic projects that propose a reading of the current reality of Mozambique, generally about urban identity, people and their space in the city, between memories and the present, current national affairs and tradition: “Occupations “(portraits of anonymous inhabitants in their places of work or life – PHOTOQUAI 2013 and Revue Camera, Paris, nº 2, 2013); «Showtime», 2013 (portraits of women on a return to Rua Araújo that evoked Rangel and Cabral); «Interior Lanscapes» (Maputo architectures and the reuse of old spaces of colonial times – POPCAP 15 Prize for African Photography); «Gurué 15 ° 28 ‘S 36 ° 59’ E” (the immense landscapes of tea in Zambézia).
It is a body of work with an evident thematic coherence and no use of shortcuts or exoticism.
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