Sam Ilus

Foto by Prof. Armin Prinz, Vienna.

Mbombe Ilunga, who calls himself Sam Ilus, is a young popular painter in Kinshasa, Republic of Congo. He was born in Kinshasa in 1979 and started his career in 1997.

Expositions: 2005 "Regards sur les 15 ans de transition", Hotel Memling and Bibliotheque Wallonie-Bruxelles; 2007 "Le Congo d'hier, d'aujourd'hui et de demain", Hotel Memling, Kinshasa; 2010 "FUTUR CONGO", De Warande, Turnhout, Belgium;  "50 Jahre Unabhängigkeit des Kongo in Bildern", Castle of Puchenau, Linz, Austria; "Die Freiheit und der Kongo", Jägermayrhof, Linz, Austria.

Studio address: Av. des Antennes n.14, C/Masina.

"R D C Fini la Recration". Acrylic colors on canvas, 92 x 140 cm, 2008. (Part of the "Prof. Armin Prinz Donation").

"In ‘RDC Fini la recreation’ Sam Ilus shows the contrast of what
Western and African politicians and authorities promise to the Congolese
people and what the actual grim reality is like. Central on the left, and taking
almost half of the space of the painting, is depicted the face of a white
man with dark sunglasses, holding a speech. His sunglasses dimly reflect the
suffering of the Congolese people – violence, hunger, and distress. Among
the listeners are Javier Solana, Secretary-General of the Council of the European
Union; William Lacy Swing, Chief of Mission, MONUC, and Coordinator
of United Nations activities in the DRC, and a bishop. They promise
peace – symbolized by the peace dove, and a jet fighter suggesting protection
– and prosperity, as shown by the sturdy worker wearing a blue overall,
yellow hardhat, and a shining watch on his wrist. He proudly holds the
national flag. In the background the population is cheering. The African
Union, United Nations, and the European Community throw relief supplies
from airplanes."
Ruth Kutalek: Congolese paintings on suffering, violence, and trauma. In: Sjaak van der Gest & Marian Tinkink: Theory and Action - Essays for an anthropologist. Uitgeverij AMB, USB 97890 79700 073, Amsterdam 2009.

"50 ANS DES MALADES ou d'indepandance". Acrylic colors on canvas, 90 x 90 cm, 2010.

(50 years of illness - 50 years of Independence of the Congo).

"Fini la recreation. La liberation a la dictature". Acrylic colors on canvas, 58 x 78 cm, 2010.

"G 20". Acrylic colors on canvas, 81 x 107 cm, 2009..

"Congo Source". Acrylic colors on canvas, 82 x 123 cm, 2008.

(Part of the "Prof. Armin Prinz Donation").

"Barack Obama - How to heal the world". Acrylic colors on canvas, 88 x 132 cm, 2009.

"Non! Plus jamais ca les violences contres les femmes a l'est.". Acrylic colors on canvas, 120 x 150 cm, 2008.

"A qui le monde dans cet epoque de vitesse?". Acrylic colors on canvas, 110 x 150 cm, 2007.

"Un bon choix pour un bon avenir (Vol.1)". Acrylic colors on canvas, 100 x 136 cm, 2006.

This painting was part of the exhibition "Le Congo d'hier, d'aujourd'hui et de demain", held at Hotel Memling, Kinshasa, in 2007. Bibiche Mumbu, journalist, writes about this particular picture:

"C'est un package qui ramasse tout d'un bloc: les attentes, les promesses, la misere, les immeubles, la maladie, le viol, l'exode, la scolarisation, l'agriculture, les autoroutes ou l'evolution, etc. Et tout ce package prend une direction ou une autre selon le choix des urnes que l'on fait, comme si la solution ne viendrait que de la et de nulle part ailleurs...

Comme une sorte de reve realisable!

Homme ou femme, on reste tous dans l'attente de quelque chose, comme si le vouloir vraiment le fera effectivement se realiser. Le centre, ce sont les urnes, les elections. Et, d'elles decouleront ou la guerre et les maladies, l'exode et le viol, la paix, les immeubles et les autoroutes, ou les soins medicaux et le development d'agriculture, etc. La cle ce seraient les elections, d'ou l'attente de tous... C'est tellement simple!" 

"Un bon choix pour un bon avenir". Acrylic colors on canvas, 90 x 127 cm, 2006. 

The people can elect between superstition (represented by the raven), education (represented by the book) or diamonds and gold.