Jean Michel Dissake is a 36 year old artist from Yaounde, Cameroon. Imagine meeting an artist who spoke as if Nature itself was speaking? Jean Michel's message - we must heal the Tree of Life, share love and find balance between nature and technology. Jean Michel's sculptural art is amazing but his message about nature is profound. He learned directly from nature when he lived for 9 years in a forest near his grandfather's village in NW Cameroon after studying Economics at Yaounde University. Africa News describes Jean Michel's work as, 'new sculptural forms and an ecological discourse'.
In September, 2020, Jean Michel was assaulted and suffered an injury to his spine. He had surgery and has been in the hospital for more than two months. All donations will be used for Jean Michel's medical costs, hospital expenses and rehabilitation. Thank you for your support of this extraordinary artist!
Jean Michel's concern about the destruction of nature and biodiversity translates to love, unity and healing the Tree of Life. He teaches that the sacred forest is also inside ourselves. The vine is a symbol for the link between everything and represents the vibration, the veins, the dna, the umbilical cord. He says we must find balance between nature and technology to heal the planet and ourselves, an essential wake-up call.
I traveled to Yaounde, Cameroon in summer of 2017 and was amazed at the sculptural works in his studio and how he lives his message. The culture of ceremony, knowledge of humans' connection with nature, honoring animals, insects, the air and the water, are communicated through his teachings and his works. 'Mudiki Free Laboratory of Visual Arts' is Jean Michel's studio in Yaounde where he mentors many young people and artists to make art, learn about nature and perform. 'The Rebirth of Nature', a performance Jean Michel wrote and is directing, is a modern myth telling the story of the destruction and restoration of nature.
Thank you for your support of Jean Michel Dissake.
More about Jean Michel Dissake:
Jean Michel is an extraordinary young 36 year old artist living and working in Yaounde, Cameroon. His sculptural works using found and recycled materials represent his views on the environment and a powerful message about nature. He studied Economics at Yaounde University for two years before leaving the university to live in the forest and learn from the wisdom of nature. Jean Michel lived for 9 years in a forest near his grandfather's village in NW Cameroon. Jean Michel has a studio in Yaounde that he calls 'Mudiki Free Laboratory of Visual Arts' where he works and mentors students.
During teaching and residencies in the US during the past 3 years Jean Michel has met many people and has quickly made friends who are drawn to him and his message. I met the artist during his residency at the Scrap Exchange in Durham, NC in 2017 and was amazed at his sculptures created with vines, recycled metal, computer parts, termite dust and wire as well as his compelling teaching about humans and nature. He says that we have to respect and restore nature and share love. Jean Michel has a unique gift as an artist and an ability to communicate the reality of our relationship with nature.
Here is an interview with Frank Stasio on WUNC The State of Things during Jean Michel's teaching residency at the Gregg Museum and NCSU in February, 2019:
Jean Michel's sculptures have been exhibited in various venues in Africa, Europe and the US. In 2019 he was invited by the Gregg Museum and NC State University in Raleigh, NC for a teaching residency where he worked with students and exhibited works at the Gregg Museum. Jean Michel also worked as resident artist at the Scrap Exchange in Durham, NC.
In the summer of 2017 I traveled to Cameroon and saw firsthand that Mudiki Studio is not only a place for Jean Michel to construct amazing sculptures but also a vibrant community art center where young people go for free to learn about art and nature, create sculptures, participate in performances, make costumes and experimental music.
Jean Michel describes Mudiki Studio: https://vimeo.com/user6672670/review/425988734/70085347f5
Any donations are greatly appreciated and needed urgently to assist Jean Michel with medical expenses for his recovery so that he can get back to his work at Mudiki Studio.
- Audrey Green
- susan luddeke
- Jeanne Kronsnoble
- Louise Johanson
- Claire Ashby
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