In June 2010, for the third time, BOZAR EXPO presents the biennial Summer of Photography, a programme that includes some 30 exhibitions, colloquia, workshops, and other photographic events all over Belgium. The centrepiece of the festival is A Useful Dream, a retrospective exhibition of modern African photography. Western colonialism long monopolised how the African continent was seen. Until half-way through the 20th century, with a few exceptions, the pretext of “scientific” objectivity was used to reduce Africa to a series of exotic clichés. Since independence, African countries have undertaken an extensive process of emancipation, particularly when it comes to developing their own vision of themselves. Photography has played a key role in this process. The A Useful Dream exhibition retraces 50 years of history, showing how African photographers have seen their own continent. Over those years they have gradually broken free of the way of looking at Africa imposed on them by the West. The exhibition has been put together by Simon Njami, author of, among other works, the remarkable Anthologie de la photographie africaine.