Nuit de Noël (Happy-Club)

Artworks > Photography

Malick Sidibé
Gelatin silver print, printed 2008
Image size: 27 x 27 cm
Paper size: 40 x 30 cm
Titled, dated and signed in black ink below image on print recto

It is late at night. Many people have already left the party. Empty bottles are standing around. Yet these youngsters are still here. The girl has taken off her shoes, and now they are gingerly dancing on, almost touching. They are happy, centered, relaxed.

Thanks to Malick Sidibé, this perfect moment in 1963 Bamako has been captured for all eternity. The Eye of Bamako, as photographer Malick Sidibé was nicknamed, took thousands of pictures in and around the Malian capital, thus chronicling a whole new era, inspired by the latest American and European fads. 

In his own words: “We were entering a new era, and people wanted to dance. Music freed us. Suddenly, young men could get close to young women, hold them in their hands. Before, it was not allowed. And everyone wanted to be photographed dancing up close.”

Nuit de Noël (Happy-Club) has been selected by TIME Magazine as one of the 100 most influential images of all time.

Born in 1935, in the small village of Soloba, Sidibé stood out quickly because of his talent for drawing. His tutors encouraged him to enlist in the School for Sudanese Arts in Bamako. He ...Read more

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