Street art in Khartoum. Copyright Sudan Memory.
Street art in Khartoum. Copyright Sudan Memory.

Sudan Revolution 2019 Street Art

Street art in Khartoum. Copyright Sudan Memory.
Sudan Memory

Sudan’s economic decline and increasing bread and fuel shortages, affecting life for all areas, cultural groups and societies, led to beginning of a series of protests from December 2018. This grew into a revolutionary uprising, supported by peaceful protests of civilian groups throughout Sudan, including the 58 day sit in from 3 July 2019 that was violently dispersed by the Janjaweed militia, using live ammunition and leaving over 100 dead. These efforts succeeded in ousting the 30-year government of former president Omar el Bashir, one of Africa’s longest serving dictators.

The 2019-19 Sudan street protests inspired political revolution, but also inspired a revolution in art. Murals sprung up on walls, buildings, pavements and any other surface that could be appropriated. Many artists used their work to voice frustrations of the masses in a country yearning for change, also to express their hopes and wishes for the future. For example, the breaking of chains that had for so long held and silenced so many in Sudan, as well as doves representing a desire for peace and aspects of various cultures and heritages that represent the diversity of Sudan and those who have been taking part in the protests. Amongst this were ancient cultural motifs, the design and characters from which, such as the Nubian Queen Kandaka, were also represented in the activities and costume of the protestors. Indeed, an art and cultural collective was formed during the ongoing sit-ins.

These artworks are products of the revolutionary movement and reflect a Sudanese population that set about realising its own capacity to overturn the forces of state repression. However, much of the art created during this time was erased by the militias, the works that remain are continually eroded by the daily life, activity and development of Khartoum as a capital city, and by the fierce impact of the local climate.

While these sorts of collections are essentially temporary, recording efforts, such as the photographs taken to establish the collection featured here, ensure these memories will not fade.

Note to user

Dear user,

In response to current developments in the web technology used by the Goobi viewer, the software no longer supports your browser.

Please use one of the following browsers to display this page correctly.

Thank you.