Cameroun: L'Élan Vital, Sculpture Exhibit by Jean Michel Dissake

    Cameroun: L’Élan Vital, Sculpture Exhibit by Jean Michel Dissake

    Mar 17, 2017 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Cameron Gallery @ the Scrap Exchange
    2050 Chapel Hill Rd
    Durham, NC 27707
    Diana Shark

    The Cameron Gallery is proud to welcome Jean Michel Dissake in his first U.S. sculpture exhibit, Cameroun: L’Élan Vital (translated, Cameroon: Force of Nature). Constructed of found materials, the exhibit is an amazing fusion of painting and sculpture, inspired by the customs of the Pongo village on the banks of the Mongo River and informed by a contemporary sensibility. Dissake’s intention is to find a balance between the natural environment and the human footprint. Born in 1983 in Yaoundé Cameroon, Jean Michel graduated with an Economics degree from the University of Douala. Unsatisfied with his career choice and encouraged by family members, he turned to artistic training. Dissake was mentored by the internationally acclaimed Cameroonian artist Joël Mpah Dooh.

    Mr. Dissake was discovered in 2015 by long-time friend of the Scrap Exchange, artist Anne Gregory. Ms. Gregory was in Cameroon working on an audio/visual installation with girls orphaned by AIDS. When she entered Jean Michel’s studio she was immediately impressed with the powerful visionary quality of his work. His use of found objects made him a natural fit for The Scrap Exchange’s creative reuse mission. As his American sponsor, Anne has worked for nine months to help make Mr. Dissake’s first show in the U.S. possible. She can be reached for comment at or (919) 672 0404.

    Mr. Dissake will demonstrate his sculpture techniques during a brief residency period that includes the creation of a site specific sculpture using materials from the Scrap Exchange. Details on this residency will be released at the opening.

    The opening reception’s festivities include light snacks and drinks, as well as free art making in the Make and Take room. This event is free and the public is warmly welcomed. The Cameron Gallery is located inside The Scrap Exchange creative reuse arts center. For more information, call The Scrap Exchange.

    Alexis Allston
    I'm a fall editorial intern here at Durham Magazine. I'm a sophomore Media and Journalism major at UNC, with a concentration in reporting. I love writing for the Daily Tar Heel and playing softball in my free time!