Art Exhibit: "The Business of Sustainable Development--An African Forest Tale" | Wilson Center

Art Exhibit: "The Business of Sustainable Development--An African Forest Tale"

You are cordially invited to a special exhibition of art by Senegalese Glass Painter Mor Gueye illustrating a children's story written by Woodrow Wilson Fellow Jesse Ribot on the disjuncture between European and local discourses in colonial and post-colonial forestry.

Mor Gueye specializes in what is known in French as sous-verres, painting on window glass. Using bright paints, Gueye depicts animals, scenes of Africa, miracles performed by Cheik Amadou Bamba (founder of the Islamic Mouride brotherhood), scenes from the Qur'an, and other subjects. Much of his work focuses on Islamic life, Islamic people, and Islamic history. His work is popular among resident expatriates and tourists, and has appeared in a number of exhibitions in Africa and Europe.

The origins of glass painting can be traced to the most ancient cultures, but has strong roots in the Islamic world and the Mediterranean. At the end of the nineteenth-century, glass paintings depicting Coranic images spread across the Muslim world, finding their way to Senegal.

Modern glass painting has been used to express both religious and secular themes.

Glass paintings are usually made on pieces of glass that are 2 mm thick. When an image has been selected, it is placed on top of the glass and a thin pen is used to outline the design. All painting is done on the reverse side from which it will be seen. Colors are filled in beginning with those in the front and finishing with those in the distant background.