DYNAMIC AFRICA

Set up in 2010, Dynamic Africa is a rich content-driven creative space with a Pan-African outlook established as an expressive platform for African experiences, African culture and African stories.


Dynamic Africa is a diverse multimedia platform, which curates global ideas, memes, attitudes and other phenomena that shape popular culture, with both a local and global African perspective.




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Posts tagged "art"

Nigerian Architect Kunlé Adeyemi’s “Floating School” Highlighted in Al Jazeera Documentary.

Two years ago, this pioneering floating school in Lagos’s ‘floating’ slum of Makoko was labelled as ‘illegal’ by authorities who then threatened to demolish it. This year, the brainchild of Nigerian architect Kunlé Adeyemi has been nominated as Design of the Year by London’s Design Museum.

Adeyemi’s innovative design came about after he had had several discussions with Makoko residents about how to resolve the environmental issues that concerned the local community. His design also came about during a time where the Lagos government had been threatening to evict Makoko residents and demolish the slum.

“There are hundreds if not thousands of Makokos all over Africa,” Adeyemi says. “We cannot simply displace this population; it’s important to think about how to develop them, how to create enabling environments for them to thrive, to improve the sanitation conditions, to provide the infrastructure, schools and hospitals to make it a healthy place.

“My belief is that in developing Africa we need to find solutions that can be developed by the grassroots, through the grassroots, and achieve the same level of significance as we have on the high-end projects.”
Now, in a new documentary project by Al Jazeera that looks at unconventional pioneers in the architecture industry, Adeyemi’s floating school is brought to life in the episode Working On Water, directed by award-winning South African filmmaker Riaan Hendricks, as part of the network’s Rebel Architecture series. 
ETA: We’ll be uploaded the series after it airs on Al Jazeera so watch this space!

GLOBAL EVENTS LISTINGS - ART & FILM: July 18th, 2014.

FRANCE: Maroc, couleur désert (Morocco, desert colour).

Consisting of over 100 rugs, blankets and cushions woven by the Aït Khebbach - a semi-nomadic Amazigh (Berber) people living along the border with Algeria, the exhibition highlights the cultural and personal significance of these woven pieces, through multimedia arts such as film, photography and music, and the women who create them.

Each life-size photograph taken by Serge Anton reveals not only the artistic tapestry of each textile, but places the woman responsible for its creation in front of her work as a way to give credit where credit is due.

Musée Bargoin, Clermont-Ferrand.
30 April - 25 August 2014.

FRANCE: Yinka Shonibare - “Egg Fight”.

Fondation Blachère is presenting a solo exhibition and new light installation by Yinka Shonibare MBE RA. The exhibition takes its cue from Shonibare’s installation Egg Fight (2009) recently acquired by Fondation Blachère.

Inspired by Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver Travels, the piece is a satirical staging of the divisions between Protestants and Catholics through the argument over which end of a boiled egg should be broken, the large or small end. This work reflects Shonibare’s interest in addressing conflicting ideologies observed in culture, politics and society.

Fondation Blachère, Apt, France.
23rd May - 20th Sept. 2014.

ENGLAND: Yinka Shonibare at Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition 2014.

See some of Shonibare’s work at the Royal Academy of Arts in London as part of their “Summer Exhibition”.

Royal Academy of Arts, London.
9 June - 17 August.

SOUTH AFRICA: “21 Icons” photography exhibit opening June 16th at MOAD.

Mercedes-Benz presents ‘21 Icons – Portrait of a Nation’ opening at the Museum of African Design in the Maboneng Precinct, Johannesburg, on Youth Day, 16 June. The exhibition runs to 17 August and features the work of award-winning photographer Adrian Steirn who, for several years, has photographed some of South Africa’s most inspiring icons.

MOAD, Johannesburg.
16 June – 17 August.

USA: “Tête de Femme” by Mickalene Thomas.

Tête de Femme, a new body of work by artist Mickalene Thomas, explores the intricacies of female beauty through painting and collage, focusing on how artifice serves both to mask and reveal the individual essence of her subjects.

Lehmann Maupin, New York.
June 26 – August 8, 2014.

GERMANY: “Giving Contours to Shadows”.

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.

Look out for:

September 2014 Kër Thiossane, Dakar
October 2014 Video Art Network / CCA, Lagos
November 2014 Parking Gallery / VANSA, Johannesburg

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin.
May 24 – July 27, 2014.

USA: Trenton Doyle Hancock: “Skin and Bones, 20 Years of Drawing”.

A new and exciting exhibition at the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston features work from American artist Trenton Doyle Hancock amassed over a period of two decades, from 1984 to 2014, chronicling the foundation of the artist’s prolific career. Beginning with his childhood, the exhibition provides a unique glimpse into the evolution of Hancock’s idiosyncratic vision.

'Trenton Doyle Hancock: Skin and Bones, 20 Years of Drawing is the first in-depth examination of Hancock’s extensive body of drawings, collages, and works on paper. The exhibition features more than two hundred works of art as well as a collection of the artist’s notebooks, sketchbooks, and studies, many showing the preparation for several public commissions.

Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Texas.
April 27 – August 3, 2014.

ENGLAND: “Return of the Rudeboy” Exhibition.

This summer, London’s Somerset House is highlighting one of Jamaica’s most influential exports on British fashion, music and style - the Rudeboy.

Birthed on the streets of Kingston, Jamaica, the Rudeboy (or Rudie) came to represent the young rebels who wore distinctively sharp sartorial styles such as Mohair suits, thin ties and pork pie hats. Much of their identity was rooted in aesthetics but their style was also closely connected to the music movements of the time, notably American Jazz and R&B musicians.

Curated by prolific photographer and filmmaker for music’s most wanted Dean Chalkley and fashion-industry favourite creative director Harris Elliott, this interactive exhibition focuses on and highlights the origins of Rudeboy culture in Jamaica, as well as its presence in the United Kingdom through various subcultures, through a series of portraits, installations and set pieces.

Somerset House, London.
13 June – 25 August 2014.

USA: Free Outdoor Screening of Wattstax.

A free outdoor screening of the legendary documentary that chronicles the events and social climate surrounding the 1972 Wattstax day-long concert, hosted by BAM.

Putnam Triangle Plaza, 22 Putnam Ave, Brooklyn, NY.
22 July at 8pm.

USA: “Drawing On Things” with Shantell Martin.

Inspired and led by Shantell Martin, adult workshop participants will bring their own objects to adorn with elaborate, original drawings! BYO blank canvas (any white object — clothing, curtains, tote bags, shoes, lampshades, whatever!) and drawing supplies will be provided. Open bar.

MoCADA, Brooklyn, NY.
July 2014 at
6:30 am (I think they meant pm) - 8:30 pm.

USA: 2014 AFF SUMMER SERIES, New York.

Lots of great movies to be seen all summer long thanks to the folks a AFF. Join them at various venues in NYC parks to get your fill!

Various parks, New York City,
July 7th - September 7th, 2014.

TO ADVERTISE AND PROMOTE YOUR EVENT WITH DYNAMIC AFRICA, EMAIL DYNAMICAFRICABLOG@GMAIL.COM.

World Cup 2014 Fan Favourite Posters created by Jon Rogers.

Vancouver designer Jon Rogers created a series of posters depicting the fan favourite player, according to Bleacher Report, from each country participating in this year’s World Cup. Above are the posters of players from the African teams currently playing in Brazil for a chance at football’s most prestigious trophy.

All eyes on me #Longstreet #capetown #art #africa (at Long street cape town)

#capetown #art (at The Mexican Kitchen)

#mamafrica #longstreet #capetown #art #africa (at Long street cape town)

POPCORN // POP ART #vscocam #capetown #art #popart (at Claremont Cape Town)

typicalugandan:

"A world without him" by Ugandan artist: Ronex Ahimbisbwe.

typicalugandan:

"Caregiver" by Ugandan artist; Daudi Karungi.

GLOBAL EVENTS LISTING: JUNE 8TH, 2014.

USA: Ibrahim El Salahi - Selected Works 1962-2010 

The Skoto Gallery in New York is currently hosting “Selected Works 1962-2010” which showcases a collection of Sudanese artist Ibrahim El Salahi’s works. The exhibition, his second at the gallery and the first U.S presentation of his work since his highly-acclaimed retrospective at the Tate Modern, London in 2013, features a range of dynamic drawings and paintings by the artist throughout the majority of his career. 

May 1st – June 14th, 2014
SKOTO GALLERY, New York

FRANCE: Maroc, couleur désert (Morocco, desert colour).

Consisting of over 100 rugs, blankets and cushions woven by the Aït Khebbach - a semi-nomadic Amazigh (Berber) people living along the border with Algeria, the exhibition highlights the cultural and personal significance of these woven pieces, through multimedia arts such as film, photography and music, and the women who create them.

Each life-size photograph taken by Serge Anton reveals not only the artistic tapestry of each textile, but places the woman responsible for its creation in front of her work as a way to give credit where credit is due.

Musée Bargoin, Clermont-Ferrand.
30 April - 25 August 2014.

SUISSE: Here Africa / Ici l’Afrique.

Here Africa / Ici l’afrique assembles, for the first time in Switzerland, contemporary African art with more than 70 works by 24 artists from 17 African countries. The exhibition is hosted in the premises of the Château de Penthes, Geneva-Pregny, located in the area of United Nations and the international organizations. Originally from Maghreb and sub-Saharan Africa, some residing in Africa while others in the diasporas and coming from different generations, the participating artists and filmmakers are interesting for their great contribution to the aesthetic and cultural development of their continent, as well as for their involvement in key questions regarding African people.

The catalogue of 146 pages includes 48 pages of colour pictures, an introduction by the curator, interviews with the artists Frédric Bruly Bouabré, Barthélémy Toguo and the Senegalese writer Boubacar Boris Diop, as well as a section on the artists of Maghreb curated by the editorial team of Ibraaz, London.

Contemporary Africa through the Eyes of its Artists
A project by ART for The World.

Château de Penthes, Geneva.
8 May–6 July 2014.

SOUTH AFRICA: Sydelle Willow Smith - “Soft Walls”.

Hosted at Cape Town’s Ava Gallery,Smith’s Soft Walls figuratively investigates the subtle ways in which African nationals and South Africans, in relationships, make sense of their space, experiences and complexities.

Ava Gallery, Cape Town.
12 May - 5 June.

SOUTH AFRICA: Mohau Modisakeng - “Ditaola”.

South African artist Mohau Modisakeng’s upcoming exhibition Ditaola will take place from29 May - 17 July at Brundyn+ in Cape Town. Ditaola is Mohau Modisakeng’s debut solo exhibition at the gallery.

A central tenet and foundational question that Modisakeng’s work responds to is the issue of violence and concerns around the role it plays and continues to play in colonial, as well as post-colonial African societies. His current body of work engages several discourses related to the political economy of the racial segregation, institutionalised/systemic racism, militarisation, and civil unrest of apartheid South Africa and the African continent at large. The work engages both individual and collective narratives informed by the realities of living in South Africa. The constructed narratives engage the black body as a site of fragmentation, distortion, and degradation.

Brundyn+, Cape Town.
29 May - 17 July.

FRANCE: Yinka Shonibare - “Egg Fight”.

Fondation Blachère is presenting a solo exhibition and new light installation by Yinka Shonibare MBE RA. The exhibition takes its cue from Shonibare’s installation Egg Fight (2009) recently acquired by Fondation Blachère. Inspired by Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver Travels, the piece is a satirical staging of the divisions between Protestants and Catholics through the argument over which end of a boiled egg should be broken, the large or small end. This work reflects Shonibare’s interest in addressing conflicting ideologies observed in culture, politics and society.

Fondation Blachère, Apt, France.
23rd May - 20th Sept. 2014.

ENGLAND: Yinka Shonibare at Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition 2014.

See some of Shonibare’s work at the Royal Academy of Arts in London as part of their “Summer Exhibition”.

Royal Academy of Arts, London.
9 June - 17 August.

SOUTH AFRICA: “21 Icons” photography exhibit opening June 16th at MOAD.

Mercedes-Benz presents ‘21 Icons – Portrait of a Nation’ opening at the Museum of African Design in the Maboneng Precinct, Johannesburg, on Youth Day, 16 June. The exhibition runs to 17 August and features the work of award-winning photographer Adrian Steirn who, for several years, has photographed some of South Africa’s most inspiring icons.

MOAD, Johannesburg.
16 June – 17 August.

SOUTH AFRICA: THE WKND SOCIAL ‘June Edition’.

For the June edition THE WKND SOCIAL will be joining MOAD’s 21 ICONS Exhibition as they pay tribute to some of the countries well known and celebrated icons.

Johannesburg.
21 June.

GERMANY: “Giving Contours to Shadows”.

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.

Look out for:

September 2014 Kër Thiossane, Dakar
October 2014 Video Art Network / CCA, Lagos
November 2014 Parking Gallery / VANSA, Johannesburg

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin.
May 24 – July 27, 2014.

USA: Okayafrica Presents Black Coffee, DJ Spoko & Electrafrique Free At SummerStage.

Okayafrica will be presenting a special night in celebration of 20 Years of Freedom and Democracy in South Africa and the National Youth Month (June 2014) at this year’s Central Park SummerStage concert series on June 15. The night will feature performances from South Africa’s biggest DJ/producer Black Coffee, ‘bacardi house’ creator and one of the leaders of the new wave of SA dance DJ Spoko, as well as our very own Electrafrique DJs Cortega & Underdog.

Central Park, New York.
June 15th.

NIGERIA: Afropolitan Vibes

Afropolitan Vibes is a monthly live show in Lagos that goes beyond convention. This month’s bill includes Salawa Abeni - the original waka queen, Nosa - a very talented singer-songwriter and the British-Nigerian Grime MC Afrikan Boy who is coming from the UK to perform at Afropolitan Vibes courtesy of British Council.

Freedom Park, Lagos Island.
June 20th.

USA: BLITZ the AMBASSADOR at Target First Saturday at Brooklyn Museum.

Catch Ghanaian MC Blitz the Ambassador live, and for free, at Target First Saturday at the Brooklyn Museum on July 5th.

Brooklyn Museum, New York.
July 5th.

TO ADVERTISE AND PROMOTE YOUR EVENT WITH DYNAMIC AFRICA, EMAIL DYNAMICAFRICABLOG@GMAIL.COM.

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.

Five Recommendations for First Thursdays Cape Town - June Edition.

This month’s edition of Cape Town’s First Thursdays series takes place tomorrow. Traverse through the city’s central district to see the best in local art, food, fashion and design.

Mohau Modisakeng - “Ditaola” at Brundyn+:

Ditaola is South African visual artist Mohau Modisakeng’s debut solo exhibition at the gallery. His current body of work engages several discourses related to the political economy of the racial segregation, institutionalised/systemic racism, militarisation, and civil unrest of apartheid South Africa and the African continent at large. The work engages both individual and collective narratives informed by the realities of living in South Africa. The constructed narratives engage the black body as a site of fragmentation, distortion, and degradation.

Sydelle Willow Smith - “Soft Walls” at AVA Gallery:

Hosted at Cape Town’s Ava Gallery,Smith’s Soft Walls figuratively investigates the subtle ways in which African nationals and South Africans, in relationships, make sense of their space, experiences and complexities.

Stable at 65 Loop Street:

Stable brings together the best of South African design, curated by Aidan Bennetts the range consists of tables, lighting, seating, home-ware, art and accessories. New designers are added on a weekly basis. Their June exhibit is titled, “This is Africa” (T.I.A.) and looks at design in the diaspora.

SAM (South African Market) at 107 Bree Street:

Support South African designers by visiting this one-stop-shop full of clothing, jewelry, accessories, stationery and furniture - all by local designers.

Walking tour at Church Square:

Meet at Church Square at 6pm, outside the Slave Lodge museum on the corner of Bureau and Adderley Streets, for a free guided hour long historic walking tour of the area.

Works by Onitsha-born Nigerian sculptor and painter Ben Enwonwu.

Enwonwu’s body of work showcases an incredibly diverse range of art works, spanning over various mediums. Enwonwu also has a crater on the planet Mercury named after him. 

Enwonwu - his father a sculptor, his mother a cloth merchant and his son, Oliver Enwonwu also an artist in his own right - was surrounded by art in various forms growing up and all through his life. Throughout his art career, he dedicated himself to redefining the meanings and conversation surrounding ‘African art’ in the global art world and was once quoted as saying:

“Art is not static…Art changes its form with the times…African art has always, even long before western influence, continued to evolve through change and adapt to new circumstances.”

After first studying art at government colleges in Nigeria, and temporary relocating to England to further his studies at Goldsmiths University and Oxford University, Enwonwu returned to Nigeria in 1939 were he began to teach art at schools in Umuahia and Benin City. In 1948, he became an art adviser to the Nigerian government but left the country again in 1950 to tour and lecture in the United States where carried on working as a freelance artist.

In 1966, Enwonwu became editor of Nigeria Magazine and was also a fellow of Lagos University between 1966–68. He once again worked for the Nigerian government, this time post-independence, as a cultural advisor between 1968–71. He was appointed the first professor of Fine Arts at the University of Ife, Ile-Ife, from 1971 to 1975, and was also an art consultant to the International Secretariat, Second World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture (FESTAC), Lagos, 1977.

Enwonwu is also well-known for his illustration of the cover of noted Nigerian writer Amos Tutuola’s novel The Brave African Huntress.

A pioneering force in the rhetoric surrounding the early Modern African Art movement of the 20th century, Enwonwu passed away in 1994. His work is displayed in the National Gallery of Modern Art, Lagos and can also be viewed at the Virtual Museum of Modern Nigerian Art.

October: Highlighting African Art & African Artists

Benedict Chukwukadibia Enwonwu, M.B.E (Nigerian, 1917-1994) ‘Princes of Mali’.

The above work draws inspiration from poet Leopold Sedar Senghor’s 1945 work Femme Noire. While in France, Enwonwu interacted with Leopold Sedar Senghor and the Antillean poet Aime Cesaire whose ideology of Negritude, described an emergent sense of black pride.

The philosophy Negritude called for political action designed to overturn the colonial subjugation of continental and Diaspora Africans. Enwonwu adopted Senghor’s ideas about Pan - African cultural emancipation and became a close friend to the future statesman.

Senghor’s Femme Noire is an ode to the black woman, but most importantly, it is a song of praise to Senegal, his country. Its veneration of the image of the black woman as an embodiment of African ideals coincided with Enwonwu’s deployment of indigenous Igbo concepts of beauty and feminine power. For Enwonwu, Negritude did not necessarily imply adherence to specific forms but to ideas of black empowerment and emancipation, essentially the philosophical, political and aesthetic issues pertaining to Negritude, served as “the revitalization of African force”.

In this artwork, Enwonwu welds indigenous notions of power to political demands for black empowerment. The vibrancy and movement of the figures represents Enwonwu’s accordance with the inherent philosophies of the Negritude philosophy: emancipation and celebration of the Africans and their land. The vibrancy of colour which collides to yield new forms, permeates the social and cultural fabric of African societies. This work expresses the present state of neo-African culture, which includes Enwonwu’s heritage of indigenous Igbo and Nigerian art, his formal academic training and his transitional modernist practice, insights acquired from his analysis of European Modern art, and influences derived from his engagement with rhetoric of Senghor’s Negritude.

(via Bonhams)