Proximity to Power
Circle Art Gallery presents Proximity to Power, a group exhibition by Nicholas Odhiambo, Longinos Nagila, Onyis Martin and Peterson Kamwathi. The exhibition examines the Kenyans’ voting patterns while trying to understand why the citizens have repeatedly let the ruling class chaperone them into ethnic enclaves with politicians negotiating/cutting deals on the account of their ethnic populace.
As a country that has thrived on her diversity, Proximity to Power interrogates how the prospect of a person from one tribe, race or religion ascends to political power while influencing the choices of the people, making them temporarily compromise their moral values/standards and congregate based on ethnicity, regardless of their reputation. It is an objective confrontation of the rising xenophobia in Kenya while looking within to interrogate this uncomfortable subject.
It looks at the irony of copying from the colonial guide book – divide and rule, detaining and banishing dissidents, intimidating and executing opponents, high handedness and marginalizing communities perceived to be anti-establishment as a way of solidifying one’s ethnic base while attempting to dissect how innocent phrases like It’s Our Turn to Eat, Tyranny of Numbers and My People have been twisted into political slogans that are misconstrued to marginalize others, therefore, leading to exclusion and inequalities.
The exhibition is an attempt to interrogate how the proximity to power syndrome has been used as a political strategy to ascend to and retain political power with the illusion that ‘one’ shall benefit more if someone from ‘their’ community ascends to political power while looking at how ingrained hate for the ‘other tribe’ has created prejudices and a discriminative culture and stereotypes that we use to justify the fear we have for the other ethnic group/race/religion.
The exhibition runs until August 12, 2017.
April 08, 2021