Global Art Exhibitions | May 2014 Edition

Another Africa’s art exhibition picks this May around the globe from Abidjan, Berlin, Cape Town, Dakar, Kampala, Los Angeles, New York, and more contemporary Africana abounds.

As the 11th biennale of contemporary African art, Dak’art kicks off, the month of May is promising to be a dynamic month for contemporary artisic discourse. Several mega shows are currently on, including the International Exhibition (Dakar), Earth Matters (Los Angeles), and The Divine Comedy Heaven, Hell, Purgatory Revisited by Contemporary African Artists (Frankfurt). 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

 

Galerie Cécile Fakhoury | Espace à louer
~ May.17

© Virgina Ryan. Maggi, Selling Dreams series, 2012. Courtesy of Galerie Cécile Fakhoury.

© Virgina Ryan. Maggi, Selling Dreams series, 2012. Courtesy of Galerie Cécile Fakhoury.

Artist Virginia Ryan presents several bodies of work. Never Ending Story is a series where fiction leads to surprise. These collage works are based on semi-destroyed vintage films posters from the 60s to the 90s, from a now defunct movie theater in Grand-Bassam. For the viewer, the act of seeing this work is as if gazing through a mesh, peering into memory, where certain things surface and others recede. You, may find yourself searching for what you may recognize or remember. But nothing is static, least of all memory. The second body – Selling dreams, is a photographic series in development since 2012. It focuses on the advertising billboards that populate the urban landscape. These ‘Affiches Publicitaires’ that float above the streets, on bridges and in the markets in the African city of Abidjan display to us a pantheon of super-beings, possessors of symbolic objects of desire in a ‘globalized’ world. Selling dreams asks what messages are being relayed through the choice of images presented to the viewer, you and I, the dwellers of the cities,

 

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

 

BERLIN

 

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein & SAVVY | Giving Contours to Shadows
May 23 ~ Jul.27

© Lerato Shadi | Matsogo, 2013 | Videostill. Courtesy of SAVVY.

© Lerato Shadi. Matsogo, 2013 [Videostill]. Courtesy of SAVVY.

The art and research project Giving Contours to Shadows takes its cue from the Glissantian concept that history, a “functional fantasy of the West“, cannot be left in the hands of historians only. In that sense, the project looks at ways, by which artists, curators and thinkers relate to their epoch, to times past and to the drawing of prospective trajectories, thus weaving alternatives to established narratives from embodiment practices to possibilities of pre-writing of History. Unfolding into a group exhibition at Neuer Berliner Kunstverein and SAVVY Contemporary and a performance program at Maxim Gorki Theatre and Gemäldegalerie in Berlin, a roundtable program as well as a series of satellite projects in Marrakech, Nairobi, Dakar, Lagos and Johannesburg Giving Contours to Shadows reflects on philosophical, socio-cultural and historical aspects of global interest. With a particular interest in creating space for different epistemologies, the project will cast light on discourses that transcend Western perceptions of history, and propose contemporary narratives that overcome the colonial and post-colonial discourse

 

Opening night program

Friday May 23rd at 7pm @ Neuer Berliner Kunstverein
(Performances by Lerato Shadi and Mwangi Hutter)

Saturday May 24th @ SAVVY Contemporary

6pm: Public Performance on Richardplatz by Jelili Atiku “Alaagba”
7pm: Exhibition Opening @ Richardstraße 20
9pm: Concert by M3NSA at SAVVY
Afterparty with DJ Ntone Edjabe

For ongoing project information | givingcontours.net | facebook

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein | Chausseestrasse 128/129, 10115 Berlin Germany | more info

SAVVY Contemporary | I Richardstr. 20 I 12043 Berlin-Neukölln | more info

 

CAPE TOWN

 

BRUNDYN+ | commute with intuitive instinct
~ May.17

© Bofa da Cara, My African Mind [film still] 2010. Courtesy of Bofa da Cara.

© Bofa da Cara, My African Mind [film still] 2010. Courtesy of Bofa da Cara.

Commute with intuitive instinct, is a group show of video works curated thematically under the notion of Henri Lefebvre’s notions of ‘The Production Space‘. Spaces are considered areas that are never neutral, but are rather constructed, ideologically and physically, to serve a particular purpose. These spaces, whether within a city, nation, or continent, are laden with issues of power and surveillance. People’s movements are controlled, often restriced and directed to occupy certain paths of the terrain. The exhibition curated by Portia Malatjie showcases the works of artists Michelle Monareng; Mocke J van Veuren and Theresa Collins; Bofa da Cara (Nástio Mosquito and Pere Ortín); Nick Cave; Vaughn Sadie and Sello Pesa; and Gilad Ratman.

BRUNDYN+ | 170 Buitengracht St, Cape Town 8001, South Africa | more info | facebook

 


 

Goodman Gallery | Thabiso Sekgala | Running
May.3 ~ May.31

© Thabiso Sekgala. The Terrace Hotel, Bulawayo, 2013. Courtesy of Goodman Gallery.

© Thabiso Sekgala. The Terrace Hotel, Bulawayo, 2013. Courtesy of Goodman Gallery.

In his first solo show with the Goodman Gallery, Thabiso Sekgala presents Running, a photographic exhibition bringing together three series: Running Amman, Running Bulawayo and Paradise. Although shot in highly disparate places – the cities of Amman, Bulawayo and Berlin – all three series are viewed by Sekgala as part of a similar trajectory of movement, displacement, transition; each photograph displaying a veneer of calm, that may or may not be on the verge of catastrophe. Considering both the notion of running towards and away from, Sekgala confronts perceptions surrounding place, influenced by sentiments such as aspiration and assumption, and ultimately destabilises these. Produced while Sekgala was on various international residencies, this is the first time these works are being exhibited in South Africa.

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

 


 

Stevenson Capetown | ~ May.24

 

Anton Kannemeyer | Such, Such Were The Joys

© Anton Kannemeyer. K is for King Klepto (Our President), 2014. Courtesy of Stevenson Cape Town / Johannesburg.

© Anton Kannemeyer. K is for King Klepto (Our President), 2014. Courtesy of Stevenson Cape Town / Johannesburg.

Such, Such Were The Joys, a solo exhibition of works by artist Anton Kannemeyer. As South Africa moves into its 20th year of democracy, Kannemeyer continues to explode the idea of the ‘rainbow nation’ through the incisive satire with which he first eviscerated apartheid’s officials and bureaucrats. Exhibiting new works in his ongoing Alphabet of Democracy series, Kannemeyer observes that “the criticisms are increasingly directed towards an inept government which is fixated on the past because it is the only noble aspect of its existence left.” The debates around the trauma and legacies of colonialism in Africa are another thread in Kannemeyer’s imagery. New drawings and paintings from his Mamma in Afrika, series are also on show. His imagery are often in the genre of extreme satire which can simplistically be described as ‘politically incorrect’, a term Kannemeyer regards as reductive. Transgression of our strong beliefs and the sacred stereotypes of race, sex and politics is unavoidable in order for satire to be both critical and playful about themes that often abound in contradictions that we choose not to see. The exhibition will also see the launch of The Erotic Drawings of Anton Kannemeyer (click here to view works), a selection of ‘erotic’ works of recent years drawn from his journals, sketchbooks and the commercial work that he did for Loslyf (an Afrikaans version of Hustler, 1995-1997).

 

Daniel Naudé | Sightings of The Sacred : Cattle in India, Uganda, and Madagascar

© Daniel Naudé. Ankole 15. Lake Mburo district, Nyabushozi, Western Region, Uganda, 2012. Courtesy of Stevenson Cape Town / Johannesburg.

© Daniel Naudé. Ankole 15. Lake Mburo district, Nyabushozi, Western Region, Uganda, 2012. Courtesy of Stevenson Cape Town / Johannesburg.

For the past two years Naudé has focused on photographing cattle in societies where these animals are revered and venerated. This is a position far removed from the Western world where they are mostly seen as productive sources of milk, meat and skins. In his portraits of cattle, Naudé brings into our time the long tradition of depicting the natural world with its rich references to classification and comparison. Within a single photographic frame, he inexplicably captures a strong presence of the animal, usually in a sculptural pose, set within an apt descriptive landscape, and lit naturally, despite having very little control over all these elements. Thus the images seemingly defy reality and heighten the sacred status of the cattle. When seeing them for the first time, after an initial wonderment at the animal’s presence, the mind grapples with the understated improbability of the image and is compelled to look again and again for clues to its composition.

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

 

CAIRO

 

Beirut | A Guest Without A Host is a Ghost
~ Jan.25.2015

©Melvin Moti. The Prisoner’s Cinema, 2008, 35mm film. Courtesy of Meyr Riegger Gallery.

©Melvin Moti. The Prisoner’s Cinema, 2008. Courtesy of Meyr Riegger Gallery.  

A Guest Without A Host Is A Ghost brings a selection of contemporary artworks from the Kadist collections in Paris and San Francisco on a nine-month residency to Cairo. From over 500 existing entries in the Kadist collection, Beirut appointed a group of thirty artworks to reside as temporary guests in the city. The project speaks to the absence of collections and museums dedicated to contemporary art in Egypt, and draws on local partners spanning not-for profit and private art galleries and other cultural spaces, to engage more closely with the hosted works. The exhibition will be accompanied by a public program.

Beirut | 11 Road 12 Mahmoud Sedky Agouza, Cairo, Egypt | More info  | facebook

 

DAKAR

 

Dak’art 2014 | Biennale de l’Art Africain Contemporain
May.8 ~ Jun.8

Dak’art 2014 | Biennale de l’Art Africain Contemporain

Since 1992, the Dak’Art, the Biennial of the Contemporary African Art has been a platform for contemporary art with cultural roots in Africa. The month long biennale aims to be a space of different prejudice-free visions on approaches and inspirations to analyse in relation to a plurality of influences from both immediate and farther sources.

The International Exhibition of African and African diaspora artists, is one of the cornerstones of the biennale and its main event. For this 11th edition, curators Elise Atangana, Abdelkader Damani and Smooth Ugochukwu Nzewi have selected 61 artists and works organised under the the central theme “Producing the common” to link politics and aesthetics in a vigorous and engaged way.

Along with the international exhibition, numerous satellite events will run in parallel including exhibitions (Tribute, African Sculpture), art talks and more. Visit biennaledakar.org and stay abreast of updates via twitter @DakArtBiennale.

Dak’Art Talks, the panel series gathering curators, critics, art historians, artists, contemporary art publications and more will be held from May 10 – 13th | details

Dak’Art into the Campus will be held at the University Cheikh Anta Diop which will host a conference on art and the environment, a fashion show on the theme of Green-Art, video projections in the halls of the Faculties of Arts and Social Sciences, Legal Sciences, Medicine and Economics and Management and an exhibition Art and Environment.

Dak’Art OFF features 266 exhibitions with 213 on the Dakar peninsula, 26 in St. Louis and 17 in the regions of Senegal. (Full guide and maps available)


 

 

Raw Material Company | Precarious Imaging
~ Jul. 18

©Andrew Esiebo, Untitled from the series  Who We Are, 2010. Courtesy of the artist.

©Andrew Esiebo, Untitled from the series  Who We Are, 2010. Courtesy of the artist.

What does an homosexual look like? Are there mimetic relations between African queer visibility on television and African queer representation in the community? What are the issues surrounding safety with the emerging visibility of the African queer community? What examples of African queer activism exist? What are the tenets of an African queer aesthetic? What notions – queer-positive or queer-negative – are being dispelled by the media? These are the questions Precarious Imaging seeks to answer. It is the second act of a year long program dedicated to the theme ‘Personal Liberties’. Curated by Koyo Kouoh and Ato Malinda within the Dak’Art OFF program.

 

Raw Material Company | 4074 bis Sicap Amitié 2 BP 22710 Dakar, Senegal | more info | facebook

 

FRANKFURT

 

MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Maint | The Divine Comedy Heaven, Hell, Purgatory Revisited by Contemporary African Artists
~ 27 Jul.27

Edson Chagas, TIPO PASS, Filipe D. Kuangana, 2012. Courtesy of the artist and A Palazzo Gallery, Brescia © Edson Chagas.

Edson Chagas, TIPO PASS, Filipe D. Kuangana, 2012. Courtesy of the artist and A Palazzo Gallery, Brescia © Edson Chagas.

Delve into paradise on the ground floor, purgatory in the middle and hell at the top In The Divine Comedy: Heaven, Hell, Purgatory Revisited by Contemporary African Artists. The epos from the 14th century forms the foundation for the exhibition conceived by curator Simon Njami. The episodes Dante experiences range from paradigmatic depictions of human transgression in hell to repentance and recognition on the mountain of purgatory and, ultimately, salvation in paradise. Fifty participating artists from more than 20 African countries have embarked on their own journeys of the otherworld. Taking their own widely differing cultural and religious In the wake of a number of Africa-related projects over the past years, it was important to inquire into the significance of African artists’ work not primarily in the post-colonial context, but above all with regard to their aesthetics. The focus is accordingly less on historical or political content than on art as an expressive means of transporting and communicating the unspoken.

MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main | Domstraße 10 60311 Frankfurt, Germany | more info

 

GENEVA

 

Château de Penthes | Here Africa / Ici l’Afrique
Contemporary Africa through the Eyes of its Artists

May.8 ~ Jul.6

© Frédéric Bruly Bouabré.“Ici l’Afrique colore Genève ! Oui le monde deviendra la proie de gigantesques crayons de couleur.”, 10.12.2013. Courtesy of Art for The World.

© Frédéric Bruly Bouabré.“Ici l’Afrique colore Genève ! Oui le monde deviendra
la proie de gigantesques crayons de couleur.”, 10.12.2013.
Courtesy of Art for The World.

Here Africa, Contemporary Africa seen through the Eyes of its Artists refers to the chronic instability of our time. It stresses the absolute necessity for the young generation to imagine, to dream, to hope and seize all opportunities, and finally to invest their vital force in the creation of a better world. Drawing attention to the present and the future, weaving between respect for microcosms and the universal, this exhibition is a veritable polyphony of individual visions intertwined with various aesthetic and cultural traditions. Art should sprout from imagination, ethics, one’s singularity and faith in life. Curated by Adelina von Fürstenberg, this exhibition includes more than 70 works by 24 artists from 17 African countries.

Château de Penthes | 18, Ch. de l’Impératrice , Geneva-Pregny, Switzerland | more info

 

KAMPALA

 

Makerere Art Gallery/IHCR | The Photographer; Deo Kyakulagira
May 8 ~ 31

Image from The Photographer; Deo Kyakulagira, photo Deo Kyakulagira

Image from The Photographer; Deo Kyakulagira, photo Deo Kyakulagira

Deo Kyakulagira (1940-2000) was devoted to his family and to photography. From the early 1970s until his untimely death in 2000 he operated several photo studios, among them the Central Art Studio Ltd in Kampala Road. He also worked as photographer for the Ministry of Agriculture and for the Department of Medical Illustration at Mulago Hospital. HIPUganda initiator Andrea Stultiens edited his work presented in the book Ebifananyi I: Deo Kyakulagira and exhibition and added some of her own contemporary photographs to create a dialogue between past and present. The photographs on display are images made for the different institutions Deo worked for as well as examples from his studio practice and some photographs of events that took place immediately after the bush war and Museveni’s seizure of power.

Makerere Art Gallery / IHCR | Campus of Margaret Trowell School of Industrial and Fine Arts, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda | more info

 

LONDON

 

Iniva |Issa Samb |From the Ethics of Acting to the Empire Without Signs
Jun.4 ~ Jul.26

Issa Samb, 2014. Photo  Christa Holka.

Issa Samb, 2014. Photo  Christa Holka.

Iniva (Institute of International Visual Arts) presents Issa Samb: From the Ethics of Acting to the Empire Without Signs. The first UK solo exhibition of Samb and curated by Koyo Kouoh, includes a new installation referencing the changing environment of his atelier as well as his unique collaboration with French theatre director Jean Michel Bruyère. Born in Dakar in 1945, Samb founded the Laboratoire Agit’Art with a group including filmmaker Djibril Diop Mambety, painter El Hadj Sy, and playwright Youssoufa Dione in 1974. From its inception the Laboratoire was a revolutionary and subversive artist collective that brought together many creative disciplines from painting to performance. Samb has developed a recognisable approach of provocation, collective action and improvisation that is rooted in modes of contemporary art and theatre, the role of the artist in the society, and the interactivity of traditional African performance.

Iniva | Rivington Place, London EC2A 3BA | More info

 


 

Saatchi Gallery  | Pangea: New Art From Africa and Latin America
~ Aug. 31

©Boris Nzebo. HLM (Habitats à Loyer Modérés), 2013 (installation photo). Courtesy Jack Bell Gallery.

©Boris Nzebo. HLM (Habitats à Loyer Modérés), 2013 (installation photo). Courtesy Jack Bell Gallery.

Pangaea: New Art From Africa and Latin America takes its title from the prehistoric landmass that conjoined Africa and Latin America. This exhibition and major survey reunites the two former sister continents by bringing together the work of 16 of their contemporary artists. It celebrates and explores the parallels between their distinctly diverse cultures and creative practices, as they begin to receive recognition in the increasingly globalised art world. Artists featured include Aboudia, Leonce Agbodjelou, Fredy Alzate, Antonio Malta Campos, Rafael Gómezbarros, David Koloane, Jose Lerma, Mário Macilau, Ibrahim Mahama, Dillon Marsh, Jose Carlos Martinat, Vincent Michea, Oscar Murillo, Alejandra Prieto, Boris Nzebo, Christian Rosa.

Saatchi Gallery | Duke of York’s HQ, King’s Road, London, SW3 4RY Great Britain | more info

 


 

Tiwani Contemporary | Mutations : Works on Paper
May.30 – Jul.5

©Shoshanna Weinberger, Strange Fruit, 2013. Courtesy of Tiwani Contemporary.

©Shoshanna Weinberger, Strange Fruit, 2013. Courtesy of Tiwani Contemporary.

Mutations: Works On Paper will feature new works by the African American artists ruby onyinyechi amanze, Shoshanna Weinberger alongside Douglas Rodrigo Rada and Helo Sanvoy. Each artists’ individual practice demonstrates a very different conceptual trajectory and technical approach, however they are united in a shared interest in exploring the boundaries of drawing as an artistic medium. Their work demonstrates a preoccupation with the liminal, the fragmented and the de-centered which is explored as a fundemental element of the human experience. Their shared thematic focus is in turn used a s a vehicle to probe and challenge the possibilities for their chosen medium.

Artist Talk with ruby onyinyechi amanze and Shoshanna Weinberger | Sat. May.31

Tiwani Contemporary | 16 Little Portland Street London W1W 8BP | more info | facebook

 

LOS ANGELES

 

Fowler Museum | Earth Matters: Land as Material and Metaphor in the Arts of Africa
~ Sep.14

© Owanto. Où Allons-Nous? (Where are we going?, 2009 (2013 exhibition print). Collection of the artist. Courtesy of the Fowler Museum.

© Owanto. Où Allons-Nous? (Where are we going?, 2009 (2013 exhibition print). Collection of the artist. Courtesy of the Fowler Museum.

The news today is replete with reports on territorial disputes, resource extraction, and other forces that impact and endanger the environment. These timely issues lie at the heart of Earth Matters: Land as Material and Metaphor in the Arts of Africa, which uses the work of artists to examine the conceptually complex and visually rich relationship between individuals and communities in Africa and the land upon which they live. The exhibition features more than one hundred exceptional works of art from the 19th–21st centuries, including powerful ritual sculpture and masks as well as paintings, photographs, videos, and sculpture by forty-one internationally recognized and emerging contemporary artists from the continent and its diasporas—among them Ghada Amer, El Anatsui, Sammy Baloji, Wangechi Mutu, Allan deSouza, Ingrid Mwangi Robert Hutter, and William Kentridge. Earth Matters invites us to consider the earth as a sacred or medicinal material, the site of mining and burial, a source of inspiration, and an environment in need of protection.

Fowler Museum at UCLA (North Campus)  | 308 Charles E Young Dr N, Los Angeles, CA 90024, United States | more info

 

MARRAKECH

 

Galerie 127 | J’ai posé mon regard sur ton rivage .. écrit le photographe
May.2 ~

© Marco Barbon. Nostalgie d’un été #1, 2010. Courtesy of Galerie 127.

© Marco Barbon. Nostalgie d’un été #1, 2010. Courtesy of Galerie 127.

J’ai posé mon regard sur ton rivage .. écrit le photographe (I laid my eyes on your shore .. wrote the photographer) is a photographic exhibition and getaway by the Moroccan coast of Dakhla in Tangier with works by Marco Barbon, Michel Beine, carolle bénitah, Nicolas Comment, Flore, Hicham Gardaf, Khalil Nemmaoui, Michael Serfaty, and Delphine Warin.

Galerie 127 | 127, Mohammed V Av., Guéliz Marrakech, Morocco | more info | facebook

 

NEW YORK

 

Jack Shainman Gallery | Toyin Odutola | Like the Sea
~ May.31

© Toyin Odutola. LTS VII, 2014. Courtesy of Jack Shainman New York.

© Toyin Odutola. LTS VII, 2014. Courtesy of Jack Shainman New York.

Like the Sea, a solo exhibition of new large-scale drawings by Toyin Odutola. The show marks a new direction for Odutola as she moves away from the strict use of pen ink into the dense layering of pastels and charcoal while positioning her subjects amidst settings of rich textiles and graphic backdrops. The works are composed entirely of male subjects, specifically Odutola’s two younger brothers, surrounded by tapestried landscapes indicative of the diverse locales in which the siblings have lived. The shifting of context is an important motif in Odutola’s work, and represents the impermanence of “home” as an emotional and physical sense of belonging.

 Jack Shainman Gallery | 513 West 20th Street, New York | More info | facebook

 


 

Cutlog NY | Own Cult: Icons of Wonderland
~ May.11

Turf

Own Cult: Icons of Wonderland draws on the works of three emerging artists: Nathalie Mba-Bikoro, Elena Cecchinato, Leah Gordon and, Vodou flag maker Antoine Oleyant. Presented by TURF, it explores the role of icons and cult figures in creating a new visual language on human identity. The digital age, its endless flow of information, makes it difficult for us to peel fact from fiction and the past from the future. However, it does nurture our ability to tap into the subconscious, where a plethora of non-linear narratives exist. This has the potential to shape how we experience the world.

Cutlog NY | The Clemente 107 Suffolk St New York, NY 10002 USA | more info

 

 
All images courtesy of the respective artists and galleries. All rights reserved.

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