DYNAMIC AFRICA

Set up in 2010, Dynamic Africa is diverse multi-media curated blog with a Pan-African outlook that seeks to create an expressive platform for African experiences, stories and African cultures.



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Posts tagged "UK"

Artist and ‘angry hypocrite’ Yinka Shonibare MBE uses work to criticize world’s wealthiest.

Where Shonibare’s previous works have been historical in nature, the narrative surrounding some of the artist’s newest pieces is embedded in the happenings of today’s world. Pictured above is Shonibare with one of his latest works entitled ‘Cake Man II’, a piece that carries his signature use of Dutch Wax prints (a somewhat faux-African element he’s become fond of due to it’s mixed transcontinental history between Africa, Asia and Europe) tailored and worn as a suit by a headless man. But this man is not simply an ordinary man, the sartorially suited mannequin is a banker, a life-size human-like symbol of the rich who just keep getting richer.

Atop the figure’s back sits a pile of neatly stacked cakes, perhaps a reference to the falsely quoted infamous phrase not uttered by Marie Antoinette, used in this case to represent both wealth and greed. In Shonibare’s own words, the artists says:

"It’s my tribute to bankers. There’s been a lot of talk about bonuses to bankers and the top 1% literally taking all the cake. So this piece, I guess, is about greed. It has more cakes than anyone could ever eat or manage."

But whilst his work socio-political and critical in nature, Shonibare still acknowledges that he is not all that removed from this system, not altogether an outsider looking in:

"The entire art world is underpinned by capitalism, so I guess I’m biting the hand that feeds me. That’s not to say I can’t pass comment but I know I can be accused of being complicit with the system."

This work will be on display at the Royal Academy of Arts in London as part of their “Summer Exhibition" which hosts "new and recent art created by everyone from emerging artists to the biggest names in contemporary art and architecture". It’s the world’s largest open entry exhibition and has been held for nearly 250 years.

MORNING SONG: Afrikan Boy - Hit ‘Em Up

Scenes of Lagos and London living, footage of Fela and the Kalakuta queens and a sample of Kuti’s 1965 release ‘Wa dele wa royin’ are all featured in London-based Afrikan Boy’s horn-heavy banger of a track.

As great of a Fela tribute that this video is, it still doesn’t top my favourite Afrikan Boy song ‘Take You There’.

International Development Secretary Justine Greening is to announce that the UK will stop giving direct aid to South Africa in 2015.

The government’s aid programme to South Africa is currently worth £19m a year.

This funding has focused on reducing the mortality rate among women giving birth, as well as supporting businesses.

The UK’s relationship with South Africa should now be based on trade and not development, Ms Greening will say.

At its peak, the UK’s aid for South Africa was more than £40m in 2003.

Ms Greening will make the announcement at a conference of African ministers and business leaders in London on Tuesday.

"South Africa has made enormous progress over the past two decades, to the extent that it is now the region’s economic powerhouse and Britain’s biggest trading partner in Africa," she will say.

"We are proud of the work the UK has done in partnership with the South African government, helping the country’s transition from apartheid to a flourishing, growing democracy.

"I have agreed with my South African counterparts that South Africa is now in a position to fund its own development.

"It is right that our relationship changes to one of mutual co-operation and trade, one that is focused on delivering benefits for the people of Britain and South Africa as well as for Africa as a whole."

British-Nigerian sketch artist Kevin Okafor photographs each step of his drawings, you get a glimpse at his technique, and it is impressive how he uses charcoal for the hair—he smudges it, and then with a pen eraser thinly threads and creates highlights. He also uses other materials such as Faber-Castell graphite and black colored pencils

 

(via justwannaeat)

heritage1960:



Film Africa | Drinks and a Think-In
The Royal African Society and #3 Journal invite you to a ‘think-in’; a chance to meet some of the people behind Film Africa, and to voice your ideas and feedback about the festival. 
Thursday, January 176:30pm-9pmThe Marquis Cornwallis, 31 Marchmont Street, WC1N 1AP London
Learn more about the event here.

heritage1960:

Film Africa | Drinks and a Think-In

The Royal African Society and #3 Journal invite you to a ‘think-in’; a chance to meet some of the people behind Film Africa, and to voice your ideas and feedback about the festival. 

Thursday, January 17
6:30pm-9pm
The Marquis Cornwallis, 31 Marchmont StreetWC1N 1AP London

Learn more about the event here.

danceartmusic:

Congratulations to British artist Lynette Yiadom Boakye, Main Prize Winner of the Future Generation Art Prize 2012.

 “The jury has awarded the Main Prize to Lynette Yiadom-Boakye for her extraordinary paintings where darkness and light are articulated together, recognizing the quality of the paintings and the social concerns that emerge from them. Furthermore, the jury awards the prize for her complex practice, which extends far beyond painting. Indeed, she is also active in literature as a writer of short stories and is currently working on a novel. She creates one canvas per day and if not completed by the end of the day, the painting is discarded. Therefore, there is no nocturnal rethinking, no pentimenti possible in her activity. Her works are organized around groups of paintings that generally portray imaginary black characters in abstract landscapes. Her paintings do not emerge from a photographic imaginary but from the memory of figuration in the history of painting, including realism with social consciousness and expressionism. Her works thus do not focus on the unique artwork but provide a viewing experience based on a different temporality, and on the recognition of recurring motifs, figures and moods.”

Mau Mau freedom fighters in Kenya and their struggle for recognition both at home and abroad

When the announcement from London came through that they could proceed to a full trial despite the time elapsed, several dozen lined faces, etched from the experience of a long and often hard life, broke into beaming smiles.

Octogenarians jumped up from their seats, linked arms and performed an impromptu dance through the gardens of the KHRC, which has been helping with claimants with their case which dates back to the Mau Mau uprising in the 1950s.

"We are very pleased," said Wambugu wa Nyingi, one of the three Kenyans who brought the case.

He had been subjected to vicious beatings while in detention under colonial rule.

"I hope that the British government will now pay us compensation."

But these veterans of Kenya’s liberation struggle have received little support at home.

"It’s pathetic really," says H S K Mwaniki, a historian and researcher of the Mau Mau period.

The reason, he believes, is to be found in the birth of independent Kenya in 1963.

Many of the country’s new leaders had been strongly associated not with the Mau Mau, but with the Home Guard, a force that fought on behalf of the colonial authorities.

"When independence came, they were the ones in place," he says.

"Because most of the Kikuyu, the Embu and the Meru [three ethnic communities which supplied the bulk of Mau Mau fighters] who were against the British were either in jails, in detention, or completely suppressed. They could not raise a finger."

Official indifference towards Mau Mau veterans started with Jomo Kenyatta, Kenya’s first president, and continued under his successor, Daniel Arap Moi.

(read more)

Video: Afrikan Boy ‘Amala Azonto’ ft. Dotstar

Following the dance tutorial, London/Lagos emcees Afrikan Boy and Dotstar drop the official video for their pseudo-culinary tune “Amala Azonto,” in which they assimilated the Ghanian-bred dance/genre.

This is all under of their new Y.A.M. (get it) artist collective.

Watch the video below and look for the Delirious-produced single dropping Nov 19 via Meltdown.

(via okayafrica)

The biggest star in Afrobeats has entered the UK top 10 with his hit Oliver Twist. Caspar Llewellyn Smith talks to him about Kanye West, takes a tour of the nightlife scene in Lagos with his peers, and asks – are we ready for Africa’s first musical superstar*?

(read more)

*”Africa’s first musical superstar?” Really, Guardian?

Britain to banish Ibori’s, other corrupt leader’s children from its schools

Britain’s Department for International Development is accused of allowing tens of millions of pounds in UK aid to be invested in Nigerian money laundering fronts, BBC Newsnight has learned.

An equity fund backed by DfID-owned subsidiary CDC Group is being investigated by Nigerian officials.

The accusation is that the private fund invested in companies linked to convicted money-launderer James Ibori.

DfID says CDC carries out thorough checks before investing in funds.

Ibori, a former governor of Nigeria’s oil-rich Delta States, who looted millions from state coffers, is due to be sentenced by a UK court having pleaded guilty to 10 counts of money-laundering and conspiracy to defraud.

As his trial at London’s Southwark Crown Court was about to begin in February 2012, Mr Ibori changed his plea to guilty and admitted stealing money from Delta State and laundering it in London through a number of offshore companies.

DfID spent £5m investigating the case, the world’s biggest money-laundering scam ever brought to justice, and Ibori’s network - which spanned four continents.

Ibori had secret accounts and companies in London, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Mauritius, Polynesia, Panama, the Marshall Islands and South Africa.