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Silent Madness at NOW Gallery

Silent Madness. 4 December 2019 - 19 January 2020. NOW Gallery. Greenwich Peninsula

Mowalola has brought Silent Madness to Greenwich Peninsula's NOW Gallery for the 2019 fashion commission. The Nigerian-born, British-based designer marries a punk-inspired aesthetic with her passion for musical expression. The result is an immersive, interactive installation.

Upon entry, grab a set of headphones and an MP3 player loaded with a pre-recorded 6 track playlist spanning a contrasting mix of genres. Choose a song, turn up the volume and journey into Mowalola's world.

Walking through the gallery, you'll find a surrealist explosion of colour accompanied by a multi-channel soundtrack. The gallery walls and windows are draped in swathes of fabric bearing a print designed by Mowalola specifically for the exhibition. The central floor area is occupied by a plinth where a ‘band’ of mannequins will take centre stage.

Clothed entirely in skin-tight one-pieces dripping in black tar, each mannequin commands a tar-coated instrument ranging from a guitar to a drum kit to a piano. Hollowed out speakers house a set of retro TV units showing 2-minute films directed by Jordan Hemingway.

The exhibition aims to disrupt and question preconceptions of normality whilst challenging traditional discourse surrounding African sexuality encouraging visitors to shed the pressures of convention and live life by their own terms.

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