Curated by Azu Nwagbogu: Tales for a Stranger


Finissage Event:

Saturday July 1st, 2023, 11h to 18h

at The Warehouse, Zaventem

Exhibition tours, mimosas, and pastries + open studio visit of artist-in-residence Johnson Eziefula


Featuring works by Ayọ̀ Akínwándé, Anas Albraehe, Joël Andrianomearisoa, Ojo Ayotunde, Ofunne Azinge, Jaclyn Conley, Cristina de Middel, Omar Victor Diop, Victor Ehikhamenor, Esiri Erheriene-Essi, Johnson Eziefula, Jeanne Gaigher, Kate Gottgens, Miles Greenberg, Ryan Hewett, Kudzanai-Violet Hwami, Dozie Kanu, Nate Lewis, Neo Matloga, Odili Donald Odita, Emeka Ogboh, Yinka Shonibare, Kasper Sonne, and Alberta Whittle.


MARUANI MERCIER Gallery is pleased to announce its upcoming exhibition, Tales for a Stranger, opening on May 27 to July 1, 2023 at its expansive, recently converted industrial space The Warehouse in Zaventem, just outside of Brussels. The exhibition is curated by the world-renowned Azu Nwagbogu, founder of the Lagos Photo Festival and Art Base Africa, and a recently appointed National Geographic Explorer-at-Large. He is also one of the founding curators of Buro Stedelijk at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, an initiative that bridges the museum with studio practice, academic training, and galleries, and was recently named as curator of the Benin pavilion for its first participation at the 2024 Venice Biennale.


In Tales for a Stranger, Nwagbogu explores the evolving global paradigm felt by most who have emerged from the chaos and grief of the last few years, lost by the pandemic. It channels and explores the freedom, vulnerability, and contemporary art’s unifying and restorative powers in light of the various global upheavals of recent years. It examines the results of this unrest—the paradoxical familiarity and comfort of sharing with strangers—and compels communal reflection on the tone of recent engagements. The exhibition also highlights the decay of outdated systems and the regeneration and rebirth that immediately follows the end of one cycle.


This exhibition marks another milestone in the gallery’s visionary evolution, moving beyond its roots with American painters and sculptors from the 80s to embrace a cross-generational and intercultural conversation across various artistic mediums. Organised into chapters, each focusing on a unique aspect of the theme, Tales for a Stranger invites viewers to experience the artists' deeply personal narratives, spaces where they lay themselves bare and invite new propositions and reflections on their aspirations, fears, and concerns. The exhibition promises to be a memorable journey, capturing the essence of our collective history and inspiring us to explore the power of art to effect change in the world. 


Please contact for any images or press-related inquiries.

Installation Views