Renowned artistic and cultural establishment, the Franco Namibia Cultural Centre (FNCC) is on a collision course with a local artist, Julia Hango, for an alleged breach of contract and dismantling her exhibition before its deadline.
The disruptive artist, Hango, known for his obsession with nude art, has come out guns blazing against what she called an attack on the freedom of conscience and expression.
She says that FNCC has been giving over space to another client in the same gallery where her pieces are, resulting in them having to be covered at a time when they were supposed to be viewed by art lovers.
“They have been having, apparently three or four events in the space and the clients that are having the event don’t like the art pieces. They go ahead and cover the art work with newspapers or something while they did not let me know that this is happening because the work is provoking these people. They did not communicate this until I found out through social media,” she said.
Hango also slammed the institution for a poor job in marketing her work while claiming that it kept the gallery dirty with her pieces left in the dark despite the availability of light-bulbs.
She said although FNCC initially sort her consent to have some of her nude pictures covered to accommodate the client, which she obliged, she later discovered that they had been hipping up her works in the corner for three days without notifying her.
“On Friday after walking into my exhibition space, all my artworks were down by the corner. They no longer wanted to exhibit them. They did not communicate to me that there was another event which by the way was another art event. So I went to check out the work and everything was taken down. So I am like what the hell?” she said.
Hango said FNCC’s actions are a bold expression of an institution that is not accommodative of extreme forms of art despite it being a behemoth of artistic expression.
“It has everything to do with the content of my work because on the opening of the exhibition it turned out that the FNCC director said we will have a lot of children coming in so we will see how it will last.”
“A week ago they called me in before Friday and they told me Oh sorry we double booked and it seems like we are gonna have to take your exhibition down a day before the actual closing. So I am like, how is this possible when the contract that you made me sign stipulates, in bold, that the exhibition comes down on this date and that the artist and the FNCC have responsibilities for a b and c but now the rules are changing?” she quizzed.
Hango said this has been happening to other artists who have reported that some of their art works went missing and that she was speaking out on their behalf as well.
She indicated that this would be her last time collaborating with FNCC.
The artist also said she wanted an apology from FNCC which, as she said, also gets 25% proceeds from each art sold.
When approached by The Villager, FNCC’s communications officer, Alexandrine Guinot, said she would get back with a response which she never did.
However, a worker at the institution later said the artist had removed the exhibition on her own due to a misunderstanding, and that it was supposed to close down this coming Thursday with the pieces being collected the next day.
Director of FNCC could not be immediately available for comment as he was said to have travelled and would only release an official statement later.
A brief summary of Julia Hango’s works
Meanwhile, Hango is one of the most organic artists of the present generation who have taken the torch to light the path of a new dispensation of art that celebrates social taboos.
Her works depict nude images which bare the soul of humanity outside the garment of restrictive morals and she throws these back into the eye of society.
She can be shocking but at the same time hilarious, making use of commonplace objects and material as objects of artistic expression.
For her, the role of the artist is not to create, but simply rearranging nature in its entire form and finding something aesthetic in the same.
But as the artist confesses to this reporter, “Why would i bare my soul to shock you?” the underlining fact is, Hango’s mission is simply to rewrite the narrative from the monotonies of conventional expressions.