Watch a new film about Kyle Weeks’ photographic series centred on the young men of Accra
Kyle Weeks is the subject of a new short film documenting his recent trips to Ghana to progress his series, Ghanaian Youth. As one of five photographers selected by Creative Review for its Zeitgeist Award 2017, Weeks moves from behind the camera to in front of it to reveal his process and motivations.
The film, which is sponsored by EIZO (makers of ColorEdge computer monitors) and produced by idea makers Peter & Paul, follows the Namibian-born, South Africa and Netherlands-based artist as he explores the “all-encompassing, raw energy” of Accra and engages with the young men he meets - hawkers selling jewellery, rappers at a dancehall party, performance artists at Chale Wote festival, boxers on the beach, stylists in impeccable retro outfits and BMX crews doing daredevil tricks before tumbling to the floor.
“This series focuses on representing the immense creativity and self expression among Ghanaian youth,” says Weeks. “It also serves as a loose visual investigation of masculinity by portraying numerous personalities and characters who challenge our preconceived notions of masculinity and the complex nature of what being a man means.”
The series, which Weeks plans to shoot more for this summer, also considers how street style acts as an important signifier of self, social class and culture. “The men in the work have all been influenced by western music, sport or fashion, and have merged these aspects with their heritage,” Weeks adds. “In this age of globalisation, the boundaries between the west and Africa are blurring and I'm interested in the ways that this translates into lived experience as people borrow, appropriate and share ideas.”
Weeks joins Nadine Ijewere among the winners of the Zeitgeist Award, which celebrates up and coming photographers who capture the mood and imagination of now. Both of them showed with Nataal and Red Hook Labs at our New African Photography II exhibition last May. Watch the two-part fashion film, Rêver, with Ijewere here and here.
Read our 2017 interview with Weeks about his other award-winning series, Palm Wine Collectors, here.