Omar Ba in Conversation with Mamadou Diouf

Join a special virtual conversation with Senegalese artist Omar Ba and Mamadou Diouf, Director of the Institute for African Studies at Columbia University.

During this pre-recorded discussion inspired by Omar Ba: Political Animals, Ba and Diouf explore the artist’s approach to color, history, and place. They discuss the values of cultural pluralism and the connection and disconnection between Ba’s work and the post-independent Senegalese art world.

Omar Ba: Political Animals is the artist’s first U.S museum exhibition. See it now at the BMA through Sunday, April 2.

Watch Live


This conversation will be livestreamed on YouTube in the artist’s native language, French. Subtitles are available in English and French. 

To enable translation on YouTube, tap the Settings icon to turn on Captions, then select your preferred language. For desktop viewers, make sure your Closed Captioning button is turned on.


Omar Ba

Born in 1977 in Senegal, Omar Ba lives and works in Dakar. His paintings, produced using a variety of techniques and materials, represent political and social motifs open to multiple interpretations. His artistic vocabulary raises historical and timeless questions while formulating a wholly contemporary artistic message. Omar Ba’s iconography features personal metaphors, ancestral references and hybrid figures. This combination of heterogeneous elements illustrates his desire to abolish boundaries and categories. His work, with its enigmatic nature and poetic intensity, rejects all forms of didactic narrative, seeking instead to express his subconscious and his symbolic interpretation of the real

Mamadou Diouf

Mamadou Diouf is the Leitner Family Professor of African Studies and the Director of Columbia University’s Institute for African Studies. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Paris-Sorbonne. Before joining the faculty at Columbia University, he was the Charles D. Moody Jr. Collegiate Professor of History and African American Studies at the University of Michigan, from 2000 to 2007. Before that, he was Head of the Research, Information, and Documentation Department of the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) and faculty member of the History Department of Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar, Senegal.

A Taste of West Africa

View the conversation again with a performance and food tasting at BMA Lexington Market on Saturday, March 25 at 3 p.m. Learn more about A Taste of West Africa.

The Details

Location Virtual Event Cost Free

Dates & Times