Maggic Cube

*Copyright Adji Dieye, 2016

These images are from photographer Adji Dieye’s series titled “Maggic Cube”, based on her research on the influence of advertising on visual culture in Senegal, and, specifically, the omnipresence of stock cube advertisements in Dakar. Her project responds to the words of the late revolutionary, Thomas Sankara: “It’s natural that the person who provides you with food will also dictate their will to you. Look at your plate, when you eat imported rice, corn or millet. That’s what imperialism is.”

To the list of imperialist products, Dieye adds imported stock cubes, a banal product that hides, however, a much darker truth. The most popular, Maggi, was among the first brands exported to Africa after the Berlin Conference in 1885. “The cube became a key element in African cuisines, spread all over the food as a magic potion,” Dieye says, “Not for nothing, stock cubes are called ‘magic’ in popular jargon.”

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