From his studio in central Bobo-Dioulasso, West African photographer Sory Sanlé documented a nation's transformation from colonial foothold to cosmopolitan oasis. Captured on on 6x6 medium format Rolleiflex SL66, Sanlé’s keen eye provides an intimate look into the landlocked nation’s pop culture explosion of the 1970s, through changing hair and fashion, hats and sunglasses, swords and boomboxes, motorcycles and cars, the traditional and modern. A melange of community elders and emboldened youth spill from the brightly lit confines of Sanlé’s Volta Photo into the dimly lit nightclubs of Upper Volta's cultural capital, all compiled in a 120-page hardbound book. Bookending this coffee table worthy black and white monograph are multiple essays, 28 battered sleeves, and a complete pre-revolution discography. Draped in colorful Voltaic patterns are three accompanying discs, with dozens of rare and evocative recordings by Bobo-Dioulasso’s musical titans: Volta Jazz, Dafra Star, Echo Del Africa, Coulibaly Tidiane, and Les Imbattables Léopards, all darting in and out of Afro-funk, French yeye, and American R&B while still maintaining a grip on their pre-colonial heritage.
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