Trashy Fashion

Congolese artist Nada Thsibwabwa photographed by Colin Delfosse wearing a costume made of mobile phones in Matonge district, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo. All images © Colin Delfosse

Congolese artist Hemock Kilomboshi posing in his rubber costume in Matonge district, Kinshasa. A member of the Kinact platform, Kilomboshi performs in Kinshasa’s streets to raise issues about globalisation and economic plunder in the DRC.

We featured an African social enterprise in our pages, back in the days of our Ghana work, that today’s story reminds us of. Whether on the streets of Accra, or the streets of Kinshasa, we love the creative approach. Click any image, or the title link below, to see the entire collection in the Guardian:

Rubbish fashion: street art costumes of Kinshasa – in pictures

In his series Fulu Act, Brussels-based documentary photographer Colin Delfosse captures street artists in Kinshasa, who craft striking costumes out of everyday objects found littering the streets, such as discarded wigs, wires, soda cans and bottle lids, to raise awareness of environmental issues facing the Democratic Republic of the Congo. “The statement behind their costumes is to condemn and inform about overconsumption and its side effects, namely pollution, poverty, lack of reliable investments and so on,” says Delfosse. “By capturing these images, I’m giving an echo to their crucial work.”

Congolese artist Jean Precy Numbi Samba, AKA Robot Kimbalambala, pictured in his costume made of car spare parts in the Ngiri-Ngiri district, Kinshasa, December 2019. The car market in the capital’s suburbs is mostly made of highly polluting secondhand (or thirdhand) vehicles from Europe.


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