Joel Mpah-Dooh

Joel Mpah-Dooh is one of the finest artists on the African continent and enjoys international critical acclaim with his paintings and multi-media works. He lives and works in Douala, Cameroon, and studied Fine Arts in Amiens, France.

Mpah-Dooh is preoccupied with experimentation in his work. He is inspired by the tactile reality of his environment though he is mostly an inner traveller. His techniques involve scratching and he works on paper, canvas, corrugated iron and recently acrylic sheets, while incorporating earth, paints, clay, packaging, wood and chalk. Mpah-Dooh explores the fragility of individual human identity and how we reinvent ourselves while moving and evolving in the city. He suggests that in the process, this delicate “self” takes control through conflict with society and its institutions while drawing on history and destiny, as well as relationships. Mpah-Dooh’s oeuvre is characterized by the mysterious and the familiar. He has an uncommon gift of synchronizing conflicting elements; French and Doualan, traditional and modern while blending a myriad of influences.

Joel Mpah-Dooh was a visiting artist at the Bag Factory in Fordsbury, Johannesburg. Some of his exhibitions include Rendezvous, which was the highlight of the 2006 Dakar Bienniale of African Contemporary Art in Senegal. He also participated in Connections, an exhibition organized by the MTN Art Foundation in 2001, alongside William Kentridge, Kendell Geers and Samuel Fosso. He has held solo and group exhibitions in Cameroon, Austria, Senegal, France, Cuba, Lebanon, Kenya and the United States.

In Portfolios