Joana Choumali Ivory Coast

Cover Image - Joana Choumali

Joana Choumali is a visual artist based in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire. Studying graphic design in Casablanca, Morocco, she went on to work as an art director in an advertising agency before embarking on a career in photography. Much of Joana’s work focuses on Africa, exploring the cultural assumptions held by both herself and the viewer. In order to portray such complex subject matter, she decided to go beyond words or photography and began embroidering on her works, a craft described as mixed media photography. Using a DSLR camera to capture a landscape, Joana will then add hand-sewn human silhouettes—inspired by people she’s photographed in the streets with her smartphone. We featured a selection of these embroidered images from her series “Albahian” and “Ça va aller,” each one an astute observation of the world around her and the human spirit encased within it. Joana’s works have been exhibited around the world and published in the likes of The New York Times, The Washington Post, El Pais, and Le Monde. Her book “Hââbré” was published in Johannesburg in 2016.