Irene Gaouda

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Irene was born on the banks of the Logone River in the far-north area of Cameroon.  She spent her childhood years between Kumba Town and Ekondo-Titi tiny cities located in the heart of the equatorial mangrove not far from the Bakassi peninsula in the south-west region of the country.  Growing up in this area, daily she was surrounded by beautiful landscapes and welcoming countryside. These memories are etched on her heart and mind like souvenirs.

A well rounded talent, Irene works in a variety of artistic avenues including photography, writing, crafts and visual arts. To her credit, she has exhibited throughout Africa and her published books that have sold throughout the world.

As someone who studied Cultural Diversity and Communications, Irene looks to communicate a message that resonates with all regardless of perspective.  As an artist she works to connect the eyes to the soul. In a pursuit to capture and share customs, her work is a representation of life and exploration.  Subjects include: diversity in landscapes, man’s pursuit of happiness, complex relationships of humanity and nature, and gender in society.  Irene continues to exhibit regularly and is a reoccurring participant at Dakar’s (Senegal) world famous Biennale art exhibition – DAK’ART.  Additionally, she continues to promote her literary projects and work as an advocate for African cultural affairs.  She hopes to invoke the following mindset among people: “to identify with a life that once was, will allow us to be better informed for a life that can be.” 

In her own words:  “My work gives me a sense of meaning to my existence. When I’m working on my drawings, I look to recreate scenes from my youth or use this artistic expression to envision my future.  In a way I guess you could say I try to manifest my future through my work. Alternatively, sometimes things just move me from my heart. My grandmother is a great example.  Most of the works I’ve created I attribute to her as the inspiration.  I watched how hard she worked and how she cared for others, including acting as a mid-wife which in turn birthed many of the people in my community.  Her spirit lives within me and the breath I breathe into my projects is equal to the lives she helped bring into this world.  You could say it’s like she has a hand in birthing my works posthumously.”


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