Guy Tillim’s approach to photography might be characterised as turning away from the ‘event’, so prized by the international press, and focusing instead on the less sensational yet more revealing moments. His images capture the complex and nuanced details of everyday life in what is reductively termed ‘conflict zones’. While Tillim’s earlier work documented contemporary political struggles in Africa, the Avenue Patrice Lumumba series explore the intersection between African colonial history and the present day. The series portrays sites in African cities connected (either by name or spirit) to Patrice Lumumba (1925-61). Lumumba was a Congolese independence leader during Belgian colonial rule and, in 1960, became the first democratically elected leader of the Congo. At the Congolese Independence Day celebrations of June 1960 Lumumba was excluded from the official proceedings (despite holding the position of Prime Minister) but delivered an unscheduled response to the Belgian king. Pointing to the atrocities that took place under colonial rule, Lumumba’s speech was harshly criticised by many Europeans but became a rallying cry for African independence across the continent. In January 1961, following months of political unrest, Lumumba was murdered. It is the widely held belief that Belgian agents were responsible for the assassination with the collusion of the American Central Intelligence Agency.