Marc Padeu Melong, Cameroon, b. 1990

'I want to paint the everyday life of the people around me, my family and friends. Since we all live together, I share their moments of joy, but also their sadness. Not everything is perfect, there are many difficulties. However, I don't feel obsessed with simply showing this state of affairs. When I manage to capture a moment of joy, a slice of happiness, it is just as perfect. In a way, painting their lives allows me to talk about my own life. I can't work without historical and religious references in my painting. History is my passion and religious belief has always been very present around me.
In this new series of paintings, there is a backgrounds of vegetation: cocoa plantations. For those who have already been there, they may find like me that these are places that are really interesting: the different colors of the cocoa pods, the changing color of the foliage depending on the time of day (the orientation of the sunlight), the colorful shades of the dead leaves on the ground, the little stream that sometimes crosses the plantation, etc... All these aspects that I find really unique made me want to dedicate a series of paintings to them. It is a process in which my characters tend to appropriate the space, they try to "colonize" it, to domesticate it. It is an exercise that I find really exciting, since I am not sure what the result will be.'
-Marc Padeu
Padeu was born in 1990 in Melong, Cameroon. Previous exhibitions include Peres Projects, Berlin, National Museum of Yaoundé, Cameroon and the National Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cameroon. His work has been acquired for the permanent collection of Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada.