Fahamu Pecou – Atlanta, GA

pecou_3The original photograph was featured in the exhibition DO OR DIE: Affect, Ritual, Resistance at the Halsey Institute in Fall 2016. This piece is part of a series of four photographs of Fahamu Pecou’s Egungun Masquerade, modeled by Pecou himself.

For his body of work in the DO OR DIE exhibition, Pecou created an all-white “New World” Egungun costume, consisting of a hoodie, sweat pants, athletic shoes, a flywhisk, and a beaded cowry-shell mask. Strips of cloth with names including Martin, Trayvon, Emmett, Malcolm, etc., replaced the highly decorated lappets of garments with amulets that appear on a traditional Egungun costume. In so doing, the artist defied the finality of death by invoking the black men and boys and permanently locating them in works of art. DO or DIE: Affect, Ritual, Resistance serves as one artist’s action in opposition to these overwhelming societal forces, seeking instead to elevate and re-contextualize Black life and death. Through performance, painting, drawing and video Pecou reframes our view, incorporating references from Yoruba/ Ifa ritual to cultural retentions of hip-hop to the philosophy of Négritude, and through this shapes a story that seeks to affirm life via an understanding of the balance between life and death.

Fahamu Pecou is an Atlanta-based visual artist and scholar whose works combine observations on hip-hop, fine art and popular culture. As Pecou states: “My work seeks to provide a crucial intervention in contemporary representations of Black masculinity. I began my career experimenting with the branding strategies employed in hip-hop music and entertainment. These experiments ultimately led me to question not only the stereotypes engendered by the commodification of hip-hop culture, but more, to consider how the influence of historic and social configurations of race, class and gender impact and inform these representations.”

Pecou’s work is featured in noted private and public national and international collections including; Smithsonian National Museum of African American Art and Culture, Societe Generale (Paris), Nasher Museum at Duke University, The High Museum of Art, Paul R. Jones Collection, Clark Atlanta University Art Collection and Museum of Contemporary Art Georgia.

ARTIST’S WEBSITE: www.fahamupecouart.com



Each year we offer a new set of limited edition prints available exclusively to our members at the Postmodernist level and up. Artists who have been a part of the Halsey Institute’s programming have specially created these prints for us. Beginning at the POSTMODERNIST level ($350), you may choose from one of the prints we have available. Many of the prints are featured on the walls of our hall of Patron Prints located on the first floor of The Marion and Wayland H. Cato Jr. Center for the Arts, just down the hall of the Halsey Institute.  Gradually, you can build your art collection while supporting adventurous contemporary art in Charleston! For more information, please contact Tatjana Beylotte at beylottetf@cofc.edu or 843-953-5652.


Community Partners 2017