Since her appearance in the late 1990s, Wangechi Mutu’s collage-drawings depicting black women, tampered with and prey to strange bodily mutations, have generated much debate and interest on the international art scene. The broad range of raw materials she uses – magazines on fashion and current events, geography and ethnography, and pornography – allows her to tackle the stereotypes of media representation, particularly of women, head on. While presenting an overview of new and recent work, this publication is centred on the installation Moth Girls, 2010, recently acquired by the Musée. In the recurrence of a half-human, half-animal, female figure, the product of an extreme hybridization, the work reintroduces the notion of taxonomy, along with the volatile notion of classification and hierarchization of species and, by extension, peoples and races.

Born in Nairobi, Kenya, in 1972, Wangechi Mutu lives and works in New York. Recent exhibitions of her work have been held at Deutsche Guggenheim (Berlin), Museum of Contemporary Art (San Diego), and The Corcoran Gallery of Art, (Washington).

Josée Bélisle
Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal
72 pages, 20 col. ill. 8.5 x 6.5 in hardcover