new-york

Daniele Tamagni, Willy Covary, 2008, color photograph, 26 x 35 3/8".

Daniele Tamagni/“Africolor”

Danziger Gallery

Daniele Tamagni, Willy Covary, 2008, color photograph, 26 x 35 3/8".

The man in the pink suit: That sounds like the name of an Ealing comedy starring Alec Guinness, and indeed, in suitably English style, to go with his suit the man wears a bowler, though it’s bright red. Accessories include a patterned tie and a perfectly horizontal tie clip over a crisp pale-pink shirt. Yet the effect of the overall ensemble is less neat than fabulously extravagant, the kinks in the costume’s signifiers reinforced by the fact that its wearer is black-skinned, and by the clamp of his teeth around a very fat cigar. He seems more tycoon than British gentry, but is he? He is, in fact, a resident of Brazzaville, in the Republic of the Congo, where he is striding down a rather raggedy street. Ealing comedy begins to shift, for me a little uneasily, into Graham Greene.

Willy Covary, the subject of this 2008 photo, is a member of a group called the SAPE, the Société des

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