The Art Of Blackness: Capturing The Beauty Of Black Existence

This museum’s group exhibition entitled ‘Sounds of Blackness’ showcases the complex and exciting works of African diaspora artists. 

This is an excerpt from Lifestyle Asia’s May 2023 Issue. 

The Metropolitan Museum of Manila’s group exhibition Sounds of Blackness, showcasing a collection of artists from the African Diaspora is ongoing until June 2023. A variety of new and established artists, many of whom are participating in the exhibition for the first time in the Philippines, were featured. The exhibit captured the complexity, excitement, and beauty of Black existence around the world. Together with one of the artists, David White, “Mr StarCity”, the exhibit’s curator, Larry Ossei-Mensah, traveled from the United States to Ghana and now to the Philippines to attend the opening at the Met Museum of Manila. 

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Larry Ossei-Mensah and David “Mr. StarCity” White

On opening night, up to 300 art fans attended, including Lifestyle Asia editors, with Her Excellency the South African Ambassador to the Philippines, Her Excellency Bartinah Ntombizodwa Radebe-Netshitenzhe, and Honorary Consul of the Republic of Ghana in the Philippines, Mr. Carlos S. Rufino, making the opening remarks. 

Her Excellency Bartinah Ntombizodwa Radebe-Netshitenzhe, Honorary Consul of Gambia Agnes Huibonhoa, curator Larry Ossei-Mensah, and Honorary Consul of Ghana Carlos S. Rufino
Colombian Ambassador Marcela Ordonez , Brazilian Ambassador Antonio de Souza e Silva, Bambina Olivares, Gisela Pinto Zincone

Sound artists Dirty Chickens filled the gallery with experimental music set throughout the evening. It was inspired by the Sounds of Blackness soundscape curated by Carolyn “CC” Concepcion of ARTNOIR, a NYC-based global collective co-founded by Ossei-Mensah. Guests are encouraged to scan a special code using the Spotify app to listen to the playlist. Sounds of Blackness is anchored by a selection of works from the collection of Filipino collector Timothy Tan. 

Art collector Timothy Tan stands next to a Tunji Adeniyi-Jones painting, “Triple Dive Violet II”

Tan became a regular fixture in galleries and auction houses abroad finding the right art to add to his collection from research, and conversing with his collector friends, and gallery owners. These artworks being exhibited at the Metropolitan right now were sourced from London, New York City, Los Angeles, Paris , Shanghai, Hongkong, and even Accra, Ghana.

Read more by purchasing a copy of the Lifestyle Asia May 2023 magazine via or select newsstands in National Bookstore and Fully Booked. Subscribe to the E-Magazine via Readly, Magzter, and Press Reader. 

Photos courtesy of Metropolitan Museum and Heidi Ng. 

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