Dec 2013 | Art Exhibition Recommendations

Another Africa’s art exhibition picks this December around the globe from Abidjan, to Washington DC, Cape Town to Fes, Marrakech, Dakar, London, Doha and more contemporary Africana abounds.

In this December issue, Cape Town is hot with five exhibition must see’s. If you missed last month’s edition, check the Nov 2013 listing for on-going shows. Highlights include Kara Walker in London, and in Minneapolis Nástio Mosquito in 9 Artists, as well as celebrated show Wangechi Mutu’s A Fantastic Journey in Brooklyn and more…

Discover the discourse within the realm of contemporary Africana, the topics and intellectual spaces being interrogated by artists and curators actively widening the intellectual field and encouraging dialogue.

 

ABIDJAN

 

Donwahi Foundation for Contemporary Art | 02 AtWork_Abidjan 2013
~ Feb.14

Simon Allen, Moleskine Notebook, 2012. Courtesy of lettera27.

Simon Allen, Moleskine Notebook, 2012. Courtesy of lettera27.

AtWork by lettera27 Foundation is based on a collection of ‘artist notebooks’, unique pieces of work created by different artists on Moleskine notebooks, reflecting the variety, wealth and complexity of contemporary art. Through an online exhibition, AtWork becomes a vehicle for the circulation of knowledge and the diffusion of works of art under a free license (CC BY_SA). It focuses on the African continent and progresses through various chapters, collecting the in vivo experiences re-invented by participants and becoming richer at every step. This process is shaped by the direct experiences of the people who contribute to making it and becomes an instrument that does not propose pre-established contents, but rather develops dynamic interactions with the public. The collection of notebooks displayed on digital tablets and the results of the various workshops together create a new model of exhibition, which allows us to experience a sort of analytical adventure. This second chapter included the participation of Ivorian artist, Jems Robert Koko Bi.

Donwahi Foundation for Contemporary Art  | 06 BP 228 Abidjan 06 Boulevard Latrille, face Eglise Saint Jacques Abidjan II Plateaux | More info | facebook

 


 

Cécile Fakhoury Gallery | Kin-Babi
~ Jan.18.2014

© Kura Shomali. Untitled, detail (diptych), 2013. Courtesy of Cécile Fakhoury Gallery.

© Kura Shomali. Untitled, detail (diptych), 2013. Courtesy of Cécile Fakhoury Gallery.

Kin-Babi gathers works by contemporary artists living in Kinshasa. From that universe springs forms and figures contained on canvas that illustrate the real or fantasized Kinshasan life. Even though Congo has known and still experiences many conflicts, Congolese artists have never stopped producing rich and committed works that give a modern and futuristic vision of the city and draws inspiration from an imagination without borders. Painting has a particularly important place for the new generation of Kinshasan artists. Whilst paying tribute to their renown predecessors, Samba, Moké, Bodo, Chéri Chérin, etc they chart their own original paths.

Artists | Steve Bandoma, Amani Bodo, Pierre Bodo, J-P Mika, Kura Shomali, Monsengo Shula, Pathy Tshindele

Galerie Cécile Fakhoury | Boulevard Latrille, 06 BP 6499 Abidjan 06 Ivory Coast | More info

 

CAREQUEFOU

 

Frac Des Pays De La Loire | Spectaculaire
~ Jan.19.2014

Graphic by Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum & Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi. Courtesy of Frac des Pays de la Loire.

Graphic by Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum & Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi. Courtesy of Frac des Pays de la Loire.

Curated by Nontobeko Ntombela (Johannesburg Art Gallery), Spectaculaire is the culmination of a two-month process of reflection upon notions of “staging” and “performing” with the intention to create ‘an experienced moment’. Displaying works that are mainly in-situ productions, they are the results of an intense art making process within a context of a residency. In this context these works relate to an experienced moment that is also referred to as «a spectacular moment». They reference a past experience, yet at the same time function as an announcement of an anticipated experience, that may or may not come. The intention of this exhibition is to therefore critique and subvert what constitutes «spectacular» experiences, in what essentially becomes residue of the residency – what is left behind and has passed – yet at the same time act as an ongoing experience and the potential to become a reliveable experience. The group show includes works by the artists in residency : Donna Kukuma, Pamela Phatismo Sunstrum, Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi, and MADEYOULOOK. The exhibition is part of the Seasons South Africa initiative.

Frac Des Pays De La Loire | La Fleuriaye-bd Ampère, 44470 Carquefou | more info

 

CAPE TOWN

 

Commune.1. | Summer Salon & Mime
~ Jan.23.2014

© Gordon Clark. Tino/Quentino Groot Geraak (Becoming Big), 2013. Courtesy of the artist.

© Gordon Clark. Tino/Quentino Groot Geraak (Becoming Big), 2013. Courtesy of the artist.

Commune.1. presents two shows, a group exhibition entitled Summer Salon and Mime, a solo exhibition by artist Dale Washkansky. In Summer Salon, the show operates as a review of new and recent work by artists either represented or associated with the gallery. These include works by Ayanda Mabulu, Gordon Clark, Dominique Edwards, Katrine Claassens, Angela Briggs and Ledelle Moe. The second show, Mime,  presented in gallery 2, features sculptures and re-photographed collages by Dale Washkansky. Conceived as an exhibition that unpacks the concept of traumatic repression, ‘Mime’ encourages viewers to remember otherwise silent and concealed histories. The artist wields kitsch and collage in a manner that destabilises historical form. The resulting works are often irreverent in their appearance and employ strategies of humour to further challenge the locked narrative construction that so often occurs with traumatic history.

Commune.1 | 164 Wale Street, Cape Town, 8001 | more info

 


 

Goodman Gallery | C-16: A Group Exhibition
~ Feb.8.2014
© Brett Murray, Dissent, 2012. Courtesy of Goodman Gallery, Cape Town.

© Brett Murray, Dissent, 2012. Courtesy of Goodman Gallery, Cape Town.

C-16: A Group Exhibition presents some of the most significant works produced in 2013 and not yet seen in Cape Town. It unveils new chapters in some ongoing projects and features work by some of South Africa’s most important artists as well as some of the young artists the Goodman gallery has been working with over the past year.

Artists | William Kentridge, Kudzanai Chiurai, Candice Breitz, Gerald Machona, Haroon Gunn-Salie, Siemon Allen, Kendell Geers, Sigalit Landau, Stuart Bird, Walter Oltmann,Mikhael Subotzky, Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin, Alfredo Jaar, David Goldblatt, Sue Williamson, Moshekwa Langa, Clive van den Berg and Vusi Beauchamp.

Goodman Gallery | 176, 3rd Floor Fairweather House, Sir Lowry Rd, Cape Town 7925, South Africa | more info

 


 

Iziko South African National Gallery | Mary Sibande | The Purple shall govern
~ Jan.15.2014

© Mary Sibande.The Admiration Of The Purple Figure, 2013. Courtesy Gallery Momo, Johannesburg.

© Mary Sibande. The Admiration Of The Purple Figure, 2013. Courtesy Gallery Momo, Johannesburg.

The Purple shall govern, an exhibition by Mary Sibande, winner of the Standard Bank Young Artist (Visual Art) of the Year 2013. Sibande is celebrated for her practice in which she employs the human form as a vehicle – through painting and sculpture – to explore the construction of identity in a postcolonial South African context. She attempts to critique stereotypical depictions of (particularly black) women in our society. Centrally, she looks at the generational disempowerment of black women. In this sense her work is informed by postcolonial theory, with the domestic setting acting as a stage where historical psycho-dramas play out.

Iziko South African National Gallery | Government Avenue, Company’s Garden, Cape Town, South Africa | more info

 


 

Stevenson | A Sculptural Premise
~ Jan.11.2014

© Lebohang Kganye.The Wheelbarrow, 2013. Courtesy of STEVENSON Cape Town/Johannesburg.

© Lebohang Kganye, The Wheelbarrow, 2013. Courtesy of STEVENSON Cape Town/Johannesburg.

A Sculptural Premise, the group show and summer exhibition at STEVENSON’s Cape Town venue brings together works that share a sculptural premise in their conception. The works on this exhibition explore our understanding of our three-dimensional reality through contemplations of space, volume and sculptural form across a range of mediums: sculpture as well as painting, video and photography.

Artists | Igshaan Admas, Jane Alexander, Zander Blom, Dineo Seshee Bopape, Conrad Botes, Wim Botha, Peter Clarke, Steven cohen, Paul Edmunds, Ângela Ferreira, Meschac Gaba, Simon Gush, Nicholas Hlobo, Mawande Ka Zenzile, Lebohang Kganye, Michael MacGarry, Nandipha Mntambo, Serge Alain Nitegeka, Robin Rhode, Viviane Sassen, Claudette Schreuders, Bogosi Sekhukhuni, Barthélémy Toguo, Kemang Wa Lehulere.

Stevenson | Buchanan Building, 160 Sir Lowry Road, Woodstock 7925, Cape Town, South Africa | More info

 


 

Whatiftheworld Gallery | Athi-Patra Ruga | The Future White Women of Azania
~ Feb.8.2014

© Athi-Patra Ruga. The Night of the Long Knives III 2013. Courtesy of Whatiftheworld Gallery, Cape Town.

© Athi-Patra Ruga. The Night of the Long Knives III 2013. Courtesy of Whatiftheworld Gallery, Cape Town.

Athi-Patra Ruga is one of a handful of artists, working in South Africa today, who has adopted the tropes of myth as a contemporary response to the post-apartheid era. Ruga has always worked with creating alternative identities that sublimate marginalized experience into something strangely identifiable. In The Future White Women of Azania Saga he is turning his attention to an idea intimately linked to the apartheid era’s fiction of Azania – a Southern African decolonialised arcadia. Ruga’s Azania is a world of confusing transformations whose references are Rococo and its more modern derivative Pop. But whatever future this myth is foreshadowing, with its wealth, its tropical backdrop, its complicated and confusing identities, it is not a place of peaceful harmony – or at least not one that is easily recognizable.

Whatiftheworld Gallery | 1 Argyle Street, Woodstock, Cape Town | More info | facebook

 

DAKAR

 

Onomo Hotel | ONOMOllywood
~ May.12.2014

© Omar Victor Diop, American Beauty, ONOMOllywood Series, 2013. Courtesy of the artist.

© Omar Victor Diop, American Beauty, ONOMOllywood Series, 2013. Courtesy of the artist.

ONOMOllywood, a collaborative project by photographers,  Antoine Tempé and Omar Victor Diop of twenty images inspired by iconic moments from great American and European films. Cinema as a universal art form transcends barriers, be they geographic, cultural, or racial. Iconic scenes have influenced popular culture globally; African metropoles inclusive. ONOMOllywood reimagines these famous scenes set in the dynamic cities of Dakar and Abidjan where hotels become the metaphorical juncture. As crossroads, they represent forums where cultures and people from around the world co-exist and merge in a permanent cycle of reinventions and reinterpretations.

Onomo Hotel Dakar Airport | Route de l’Aéroport BP 38233 Dakar, Yoff, Senegal | more info

 

DRESDEN

 

Staatliche Kunstsammlungen | My Joburg. The Johannesburg art scene
~ Jan. 5

© Kudzanai Chiurai, The Minister of Finance, 2009. Private Collection. Photo courtesy of the artist.

© Kudzanai Chiurai, The Minister of Finance, 2009. Private Collection. Photo courtesy of the artist.

My Joburg, highlights the diversity and wealth of the Johannesburg art scene by showing recent work by more than 40 artists representing the city’s last three generations. The city has become home to a thriving community of painters, photographers, sculptors and video artists whose work describes the city in the throes of change with a complex social, political and urban history. Designed by and first shown at La Maison Rouge – Fondation Antoine de Galbert in Paris, this show now travels to Dresden.

Artists | Jane Alexander, Wayne Barker, Jodi Bieber, Delphine de Blic, Dineo Seshee Bopape, Willem Boshoff, Candice Breitz, Kudzanai Chiurai, Steven Cohen, Paul Emmanuel, Jerry Gaegane, Kendell Geers, David Goldblatt, Simon Gush, Nicholas Hlobo, Stephen Hobbs, William Kentridge, Akona Kenqu, Lebohang Kganye, David Koloane, Dorothee Kreutzfeld and Bettina Malcomess, Moshekwa Lange, Kemang Wa Lehulere, Lawrence Lemaoana, Winston Luthuli, Zen Marie, Gerhard Marx, Titus Matiyane, Sabelo Mlangeni, Nandipha Mntambo, Santu Mofakeng, Zanele Muholi, Brett Murray, Marcus Neustetter, Sam Nhlengethwa, Jo Ractlife, Robin Rhode, Johannes Segagola, Mary Sibande, Christos Stamatiou, Mikhael Subotzky and Patrick Waterhouse, Guy Tillim, Rose Tracey, Andrew Tshabangu, Sue Williamson, Billie Zangewa

Staatliche Kunstsammlungen | Kunsthalle in the Lipsiusbau, Brühlsche Terasse 01067 Dresden | more info

 

DOHA

 

MATHAF Arab Museum of Modern Art | Magdi Mostafa | Sound Element
~ Jan.5.2014

Magdi Mostafa, "Sound Element," 2013. Installation drawing. Courtesy of the artist and MATHAF.

Magdi Mostafa, “Sound Element,” 2013. Installation drawing. Courtesy of the artist and MATHAF.

MATHAF inaugurates its new Project Space, with the first installation by Egyptian artist Magdi Mostafa who continues exploring the dialogue between sound and space. Mostafa’s work evokes personal and shared memories, recalling different images and emotions to be experimented by the visitors. The artist will continue his ongoing series of installations and performances titled Sound Element, for which he is creating a surround-sound installation that blends experimental electronic and found sonics.

MATHAF Arab Museum of Modern Art | Ad Doha, Qatar, 2777 Doha | More info

 

FES

 

Galerie Kacimi | Bernard Plossu
~ Dec.28
© Bernard Plossu. Maroc, 1975. Courtesy of the French Institute, Fes.

© Bernard Plossu. Maroc, 1974. Courtesy of the French Institute, Fes.

Considered one of the most important photographers of his generation, Bernard Plossu (b. 1945) finds his subjects through travels in Mexico, India, Niger, Spain, Italy and Morocco. In Morocco the photographer traveled in Casablanca , Marrakech, Tiznit, Tafraoute , Ouarzazate, Agdz , Fes and Tangier. This exhibition is built around a series of images in part unpublished , made ​​in Morocco in 1975 by Bernard Plossu . Other photographs, taken from other series of his work, complete and thus give a retrospective view on Plossu’s oeuvre.

 

Galerie Kacimi | 26 Avenue Moulay Youssef, VN, Fes, Morocco | more info

 

JOHANNESBURG

 

David Krut Projects | 2013 Review
~ Feb.1.2014

© Mischa Fritsch, 2013. Courtesy of David Krut Projects.

© Mischa Fritsch, 2013. Courtesy of David Krut Projects.

David Krut Projects 2013 Review features work produced in collaborations with the printmakers at David Krut Print Workshop during the last year, as well as unique works created in the artist’s studios. Artists featured include Beth Diane Armstrong, Lynda Ballen, Mischa Fritsch, Haroon Gunn-Salie, Stephen Hobbs, William Kentridge, Vusi Khumalo, Maja Maljevic, Kate McCrickard, Robyn Penn, Senzo Shabangu, and Quinten Williams.

David Krut Projects | 142 Jan Smuts Avenue, Parkwood, Johannesburg, South Africa | more info

 


 

Goethe-Institut | Alice Adama in Wonderland
~ Jan.31.2014

© Akinbode Akinbiyi, Johannesburg, 2012. Courtesy of Goethe-Institut South Africa.

© Akinbode Akinbiyi, Johannesburg, 2012. Courtesy of Goethe-Institut South Africa.

Renowned Nigerian photographer Akinbode Akinbiyi has for some years focused his output on mega-cities, especially those on the African continent, including work on Cairo, Lagos and Kinshasa. The body Alice Adama in Wonderland, was developed during stays in Johannesburg in 2012 and 2013. He describes the work as ‘a wander through the contested streets of Johannesburg looking for, searching for its essential essence. Extremely fine gold dust floating ever so ephemerally in the evening twilight, down the grid-patterned streets of Downtown, out into the southern suburbs and up and away into the northern counterparts, and in no way forgetting the equally contested streets of the western and eastern suburbs.’

Goethe-Institut | 119 Jan Smuts Avenue Off Newport Road Parkwood 2193, Johannesburg, South Africa | more info | facebook

 

LONDON

 

Whitechapel Gallery | Kader Attia | Continuum of Repair: The Light of Jacob’s Ladder
~ Nov.2014
© Kader Attia. Continuum of Repair: The Light of Jacob's Ladder (2013) Installation View, Whitechapel Gallery. Photo | St© Kader Attia. Continuum of Repair: The Light of Jacob's Ladder (2013) Installation View, Whitechapel Gallery. Photo | Stephen White.ephen White.

© Kader Attia. Continuum of Repair: The Light of Jacob’s Ladder (2013) Installation View, Whitechapel Gallery. Photo | Stephen White.

Whitechapel Gallery unveils a new site-specific commission,  Continuum of Repair: The Light of Jacob’s Ladder, by French Algerian artist Kader Attia. The work revisits the biblical story of Jacob’s ladder with a towering floor to ceiling structure of rare artefacts and books. Hidden inside this library is a cabinet of curiosities filled with items from old scientific measuring devices to books by authors such as the philosopher Descartes and biologist Alfred Russel Wallace. At the centre of the work, a beam of light shines up to a mirrored ceiling creating an infinity reflection in an evocation of the tale which describes prophet Jacob’s vision of angels ascending from earth to heaven. Attia’s multi-media installations reflect on anthropology, politics and science and are rooted in history and archival research. His works explore ideas around identity in an age of globalisation and are informed by the experience of growing up between Algeria and the Parisian suburbs, and later living in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Venezuela.

Whitechapel Gallery | 77 – 82 Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7QX, UK | more info

 

MARRAKECH

 

Gallery 127 | Denis Dailleux | Ghana
Dec.20 ~ Jan.31.2014
© Denis Dailleux, Jamestown, «la voile», Ghana 2009. Courtesy of Galerie 127.

© Denis Dailleux, Jamestown, «la voile», Ghana 2009. Courtesy of Galerie 127.

Upon discovering  Paul Strand’s book ‘Ghana, An African Portrait’, photographer Denis Dailleux decides to visit. Without predetermined intentions, Dailleux follows his desire to make make new discoveries, drinking from new sources beyond Egypt where he has lived and worked for the past fifteen years. In Accra, a fishing town he finds haven. Ghana, an exhibition of thirty photographs  is accompanied by Dailleux’s latest series, Mère et Fils (Mothers and Sons) shot in Egypt. This his latest series of twelve portraits of mothers and sons focuses on filial relations, a mother’s tender look towards a son, bare chested with pride.

Gallery 127 | 127, Avenue Mohammed V, Guéliz, Marrakech, Morocco | more info

 

VALENCIA

 

Institut Valencià d’Art Modern | Tea with Nefertiti
~ Jan.26.2014

J&K | Janne Schäfer and Kristine Agergaard, Horus and Anubis in Islamic Cairo, 2006. Courtesy of the Artists.

J&K | Janne Schäfer and Kristine Agergaard, Horus and Anubis in Islamic Cairo, 2006. Courtesy of the Artists.

After a critically acclaimed run at Mathaf, Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha and l’Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris, the Institut Valencià d’Art Modern hosts the ground breaking exhibition Tea with Nefertiti this fall. The exhibition explores the visual and literary mechanisms by which artworks come to acquire a range of meanings and functions that can embody a number of diverse, and at times conflicting narratives. Through employing the Nefertiti bust as a metaphorical thread, and by interrogating the contested history of Egyptian Museum collections from the 19th century onwards, the exhibition is concerned with the critique of museology, the staging of the artwork and the writing of art-historical narrative as a means of forming and informing cultural otherness.

Institut Valencià d’Art Modern | Calle de Guillem de Castro, 118 46003, Valencia, Spain | more info

 

MINNEAPOLIS

 

Walker Art Center| An Album: Cinematheque Tangier, a project by Yto Barrada
~ May.18.2014

© Said Mesfioui Ben Salam. Collection Cinémathèque de Tanger. Courtesy of the Walker Art Center.

A locally painted poster for Ashes and Diamonds, directed by Andrzej Wajda (1958), from Cinémathèque de Tanger’s collection.
©Said Mesfioui Ben Salam. Collection Cinémathèque de Tanger. Courtesy of the Walker Art Center.

An Album: Cinematheque Tangier, a project by Yto Barrada—a multilayered exhibition of films, artworks, movie posters and ephemera exploring the practice of Tangier-based artist and filmmaker Yto Barrada. The North African city of Tangier has captured our collective imagination throughout time as a place eternally romanticized and immortalized in film and literature. Interested in the material history and visual culture of her hometown, Yto Barrada has developed an artistic practice combining documentary strategies with a metaphoric approach to imagery, resulting in body of poetic work that is internationally recognized.

Walker Arts Center | Burnet Gallery | 1750 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403 | more info | facebook

 

WASHINGTON D.C.

 

The National Museum of African Art

Lines, Marks, and Drawings: Through the Lens of Roger Ballen
~ Feb.9.2014

 © Roger Ballen, From the Asylum series, 2010. Collection of the artist. Courtesy of the Smithsonian.

© Roger Ballen, From the Asylum series, 2010. Collection of the artist. Courtesy of the Smithsonian.

Lines, Marks, and Drawings: Through the Lens of Roger Ballen considers the artist’s 40-plus years as a professional photographer through a new approach: an examination of line and drawing in his photographs.The exhibition features 55 works and one video and traces Ballen’s use of drawing in his photographs over the past four decades. With more than 30 million viewings on YouTube, Ballen’s recent video collaboration with the South African rap-rave group Die Antwoord, for the song “I Fink U Freeky,” has taken him in new directions. Ballen’s well-known works include the photographic series “Dorps, Small Towns of South Africa” (1982–1986), “Platteland, Images from Rural South Africa” (1986–1994), “Outland” (1995–2000), “Shadow Chamber” (2000–2004) and “Boarding House” (2004–2008). In addition, Ballen has devised a special technique for a series of works called “Apparitions” in which he paints and draws directly on to glass. He then illuminates the glass and photographs it. A significant shift has taken place in these photographs, as the raw, graffiti-like drawings characteristic of much of Ballen’s work has been replaced by a series of abstract, glyph-like images.

 


 

Africa ReViewed: The Photographic Legacy of Eliot Elisofon
~ Aug.24.2014

Eliot Elisofon with Mt. Kilimanjaro in the distance, Kenya. Photographer unknown, 1947.

Eliot Elisofon with Mt. Kilimanjaro in the distance, Kenya. Photographer unknown, 1947.
Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art , Smithsonian Institution.

An exhibition in celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives Africa ReViewed: The Photographic Legacy of Eliot Elisofon focuses on Elisofon’s innovative photography and its impact on portraying the diverse arts and cultures of modern Africa. The retrospective exhibition will be the first to pair his photographs with collected objects, films, books and journals from his collection of the first exhibition in 40 years to celebrate his photographic legacy. As a photojournalist for Life magazine, Elisofon photographed the people, culture, arts, and landscape of Africa becoming known as the first photographer to popularize post-war images of Africa and its leaders in American media. Elisofon also collected over 700 objects of African art during his lifetime. Upon his death in 1973, he bequeathed his art collection, personal archives, and African photography to the museum where he was also a founding trustee.

 

The National Museum of African Art | 950 Independence Ave SW, Washington, DC, USA | more info

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