Contemporary African Art Show Goes On!

Contemporary African Art Show Goes On!

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Contemporary African Art Show Goes On! Alpha Crucis at the Astrup Fearnley Museum Norway is open till 17th May despite COVID-19 virus closing most museums.

Alpha Crucis represents the final instalment of a series of exhibitions launched by director Gunnar B. Kvaran in 2005, exploring the art scenes in different countries and on different continents. The previous exhibitions have presented contemporary art from USA, Brazil, India, China and Europe, and now it is Africa’s turn in the spotlight.

African Art Dealer Europe
Works by CHÉRI SAMBA (4). | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
Contemporary African Art Show Goes On!
Installation view of works by ABU BAKKAR MANSARAY (3). | Courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum - Contemporary African Art Show Goes On!

The exhibition aims to highlight the originality and diversity of African artists who live and work in sub-Saharan Africa. The museum has invited André Magnin as guest curator. He has a long-standing relationship with Africa, and possesses a deep level of insight, knowledge and experience regarding various local art scenes on the African continent. Magnin was one of the main curators behind the legendary Magiciens de la Terre at Centre Pompidou and Grande Halle de la Villette in Paris in 1989, which was the first exhibition to simultaneously display art works by contemporary artists from all of the world’s continents in one place.

Alpha Crucis is the brightest star in the constellation of the Southern Cross, located in the Milky Way. It is one of the most visible in the night sky and indicates the direction of the South. As such, it is often used by navigators, but the star is only visible from the southern hemisphere. For that reason, it was not mentioned in European antique astronomy. The title ‘Alpha Crucis’ makes a statement advocating a reorientation of the polarised art world towards the south, in order to fight the ignorance that has endured too long and to shed new light on contemporary African art.

KAY HASSAN, “My Father’s music room,” 2007-2019. | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
KAY HASSAN, “My Father’s music room,” 2007-2019. | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum

The exhibition gathers seventeen artists from seven African countries. The artists originate from numerous countries, belong to different generations and have diverse practices.The exhibition thus shows an impressive diversity in terms of materials, techniques and narratives.

Artists:
Seyni Awa Camara (1945, Senegal), Omar Victor Diop (1980, Senegal), John Goba (1944-2019, Sierra Leone), Kay Hassan (1956, South-Africa), Romuald Hazoumè (1962, Benin), Nicholas Hlobo (1975, South-Africa), Lebohang Kganye (1990, South-Africa), Houston Maludi (1978, DR Congo), Abu Bakarr Mansaray (1970, Sierra Leone), Senzeni Marasela (1977, South-Africa), JP Mika (1980, DR Congo), Fabrice Monteiro (1972, Benin/Senegal), Rigobert Nimi (1965, DR Congo), Wura-Natasha Ogunji (1970, Nigeria), Chéri Samba (1956, DR Congo), Amadou Sanogo (1977, Mali), Billie Zangewa (1973, South-Africa).

Shown, At right RIGOBERT NIMI, “Galaxie, la ville du futur,” 2015-17 and ROMUALD HAZOUMÉ, “Elf rien à foutre,” 2005. | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
Shown, At right RIGOBERT NIMI, “Galaxie, la ville du futur,” 2015-17 and ROMUALD HAZOUMÉ, “Elf rien à foutre,” 2005. | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum

Curator:
André Magnin (b. 1952 in Vesoul, France) is an independent curator and researcher and started working on non-western Contemporary Art in 1989 with the historic exhibition Magiciens de la Terre at the Centre Pompidou and at the Grande Halle de la Villette in Paris, an exhibition for which he was co-curator. From 1989 until 2009, Magnin ran the Pigozzi Collection, Geneva, which focused on sub-Saharan African contemporary art. He later founded MAGNIN-A, which promotes contemporary African art within the international market.

HOUSTON MALUDI (3). | Courtesy the artist and MAGNIN-A gallery, Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
HOUSTON MALUDI (3). | Courtesy the artist and MAGNIN-A gallery, Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
ROMUALD HAZOUMÉ, “Elf rien à foutre,” 2005. | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
ROMUALD HAZOUMÉ, “Elf rien à foutre,” 2005. | Photo courtesy Astrup Fearnley Museum
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