Category : Art

11 Apr 2019

Dean Mitchell’s Affirmation and Projection of Black Identity

In this third part of our continuing series on artists in the diaspora who promote Black identity and pride through their work, we present American painter Dean Mitchell. Other artists presented in this series include Portuguese painter and designer Mario Henrique and Canadian artist Tim Okamura. Dean Mitchell is highly regarded as one of America’s greatest watercolourists. His reputation hinges largely on his superb craftsmanship, the emotional depth of his work, his avoidance of facile sentimentality, and an accomplished sense […]

11 Apr 2019

Retro Africa: Housing the Future of African Art

Founded by Dolly Kola-Balogun and Abdullahi Umar, Retro Africa has since inception in 2015, become a home for contemporary art from Africa and her related Diaspora, through its representation of emerging and established artists. Through a range of different channels including participation in major art fairs, pop-up exhibitions, intercultural dialogue and online media, the gallery continues to cultivate a growing community of art enthusiasts, curators and collectors.  Recently, Retro Africa launched a new space at Asokoro in Abuja, alongside an […]

11 Apr 2019

Tobenna Okwuosa On History, Religion, Politics and the Artist

Alongside a successful studio practice, Tobenna Okwuosa (PhD) lectures in the Department of Fine and Applied Arts, Niger Delta University, Bayelsa State. He is well-known for his academic approach towards his art, which is strongly passionate in upholding an African identity against the “nihilistic effect of globalisation and the current Western aesthetic regime”. Through his work, he engages a broad range of issues from the expansion of digital technology to increasing conflict caused by differences in ethnicity, religion and spirituality […]

11 Apr 2019

Stacey Okparavero on Urhobo Deities and the Niger Delta

Adopting several approaches, multidisciplinary Nigerian artist, Stacey Okparavero works across various media and genre, including watercolour, acrylic, pastel, video, sculpture, poetry and performance. In her work, she addresses a range of issues from the social, political to mental health, the environment and the spiritual. Okparavero studied art at the University of Lagos, as well as the University of Warwick, United Kingdom and Institut d’Etudes Superieure des Arts in Paris, where she majored in the study of the history and business […]

11 Apr 2019

Adji Dieye’s Red Fever

Adji Dieye’s artistic practice pushes the boundaries of photography in an attempt to investigate the archetypes that constitute African visual cultures. In her research, the continent is never considered an end in itself; instead, it represents a bridge towards further investigations into broader social and geopolitical realities. Adji Dieye graduated in new technologies for art at the Academy of Fine Arts of Brera in Milan and is now a Master degree student in fine arts at the Zurich University of […]

11 Apr 2019

As A Famous Coffin Maker, Paa Joe Turns 70

Joseph Ashong fondly known as Paa Joe is considered one of the most important Ghanaian fantasy coffin artists of his generation. Born in 1947 in the Akwapim region, Greater Accra Region in Ghana, he belongs to the Ga-Adangbe people. At 15, Paa Joe began a ten-year apprenticeship with his uncle, Kane Kwei in Teshie. In 1976, he started his own business in Nungua and has trained many young artists like Daniel Mensah, Eric Kpakpo and Kudjoe Affutu, who have all […]

05 Apr 2018

Björn Dahlstrom on Museé Yves Saint Laurent Marrakech

Dedicated to the life and seminal work of the celebrated fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent (YSL), the Museé Yves Saint Laurent Marrakech was unveiled last year. It proudly houses a collection of 5,000 items of clothing, 15,000 haute couture accessories and tens of thousands of sketches and art objects. Years ago, Marrakech became a second home for Yves Saint Laurent and his life and business partner Pierre Bergé. Having grown up in French Algeria, Saint Laurent had a lifelong love […]

02 Mar 2018

In Conversation with Athi-Patra Ruga

Athi-Patra Ruga was born in 1984 in the Transkei, growing up between the former, Umtata and East London, where in 1999 he attended the Belgravia Art College. In 2004, He was awarded a scholarship to study fashion design at the Gordon Flack Davidson Academy of Design in Johannesburg. Ruga is one of the few artists working in South Africa today whose work has adopted the trope of myth as a contemporary response to the post-apartheid era. He creates alternative identities […]

22 Feb 2018

Dotun Popoola: Irin Ajo

Born in 1981, Nigerian artist Dotun Popoola holds a national diploma in painting and general arts from the Auchi Polytechnic, Edo State where he graduated as the best student (2004). Popoola would later earn a degree in sculpture as the overall best student from the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. He also holds a master’s degree in painting from the same institution (2014). Popoola presently works as a curator at the National Gallery of Arts, Osogbo and has executed several mural […]

06 Feb 2018

Digital Art, Design and Africa

Since the 1970s, the world has been engulfed in a wave of computer technology. This rising phenomenon has not been without its effects on the art of this period, which has increasingly assumed a digital focus. Today, art produced digitally has risen into the realm of the fine arts with several galleries dedicated solely to the medium. Design too has evolved rapidly with an increased focus on functionality, and trendiness to broaden popular appeal. As global attention turns to Digital […]