Delphine Diallo is a Brooklyn-based French and Senegalese visual artist and photographer who graduated from the Académie Charpentier School of Visual Art, in Paris.
However, Diallo does not have a traditional background in fine art. On the contrary, she has explored multiple areas within the creative industries: from special effect motion art in the music industry to video editing and graphic design. In 2008, she moved to New York to explore her practice after giving up an Art Director role in Paris. Diallo was mentored by acclaimed photographer and artist Peter Beard who was impressed by her creativity and spontaneity before offering her to collaborate for the Pirelli calendar photo shoot in Botswana. Inspired by new environments on this trip, she decided to return to her father’s home city of Saint-Louis in Senegal to start her vision quest.
Sought to challenge the norms of our society and rewrite the rules of the industry, Diallo immerses herself in the realm of anthropology, mythology, religion, science and martial arts to inspire her to practise and release her mind. Her work takes her to far remote areas, as she insists on spending intimate time with her subjects to better represent their most innate energy: “I treat my process as if it were an adventure liberating a new protagonist”. Diallo’s powerful portraits unmask and stir an uninhibited insight that allows her audience to see beyond the facade and explore the subjects’ inner world beyond the photographic gaze. “We are in constant search for wonder and growth. I see art as a vessel to express consciousness and access to diffuse wisdom, enlightenment, fear, beauty, ugliness, mystery, faith, strength, fearless, universal matter”.
Combining artistic language with activism is part of Diallo’s ethos thus pushing the many possibilities of empowering women, youth, and cultural minorities through visual provocation – as she has brilliantly done in MTArt Agency’s public art projects. Diallo uses analogue and digital photography, collage and illustration, 3D printing and virtual reality technologies as she continues to explore new mediums. She is working towards creating social change and new dimensions where consciousness and art are a universal language connecting artists, and capable of sharing ideas and learning.
“I believe all humans, regardless of racial and geographic differences, share the same collective pool of instincts and images, though these manifest differently due to the moulding influence of culture. The time has come to go beyond the individual mind and relate our common universal connection to each other. We must collaborate, support, inspire, teach and learn together.”
Follow Delphine Diallo on Instagram@delphinediallo