Made from quotidian materials, Kingelez's sculptures evoke visionary architectures
The sculptures of Bodys Isek Kingelez (1948-2015) are imagined architectural propositions and improbable structures for a fairytale urban landscape. Comprised of paper, commercial packaging and the stuff of everyday life, his "extreme maquettes" transform these materials into fantastic visions that encompass civic buildings, public monuments and private pavilions. Born in the Belgian Congo, Kingelez gained international renown following his participation in the landmark 1989 exhibition Magiciens de la Terre at Centre Georges Pompidou and the Grande Halle of the Parc de la Villette, and since that time, his work has been included in numerous global surveys and in several solo presentations. Published to accompany the first retrospective of his work, this volume traces the span of Kingelez's three decade career, from never-before-exhibited early works to sculptures that launched his career in 1989 and the complex and multifaceted cities of later decades, bringing his rarely seen, distinctive oeuvre to international audiences. Featuring stunning new photography of his work, this serves as the most comprehensive volume on the artist to date.
Focusing on a single Malian textile identified variously as bogolanfini, bogolan, or mudcloth, Victoria L. Rovine traces the dramatic technical and stylistic innovations that have transformed the cloth from its village origins into a symbol of new internationalism. Rovine shows how the biography of this uniquely African textile reveals much about contemporary culture in urban Africa and about the global markets in which African art circulates. Bogolan has become a symbol of national and ethnic identities, an element of contemporary, urban fashion, and a lucrative product in tourist art markets. At the heart of this beautifully illustrated book are the artists, changing notions of tradition, nationalism, and the value of cloth making and marketing on a worldwide scale.
In 2013 the world mourned the passing of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, one of its most revered champions of human rights. Mandela provided a moral compass for how we treat each other, how we lead our own lives, and how we need to continue to strive for a just, fair, nonracial, and democratic society. Artists around the world have long made quilts in tribute to Mandela and in support of and advocacy for the principles to which he was devoted. But it is for South Africans and African Americans that making quilts in tribute to Mandela has had special meaning. Conscience of the Human Spirit, which accompanies an exhibition by the same name, features quilts made after Mandela's death--diverse and powerful pieces reflect the ways in which this remarkable man touched individual lives, changed a nation, and served as the conscience of the human spirit for individuals around the world.
This book is a collaborative project of the Michigan State University Museum, Women of Color Quilters Network, and South African quilt artists.
African fashion is as diverse and dynamic as the continent and the people who live there. While experts have long recognized the importance of clothing as a marker of ethnic identity, life stages, political affiliation, and social class, they have only just begun to discover African fashion. Contemporary African Fashion puts Africa at the intersection of world cultures and globalized identities, displaying the powerful creative force and impact of newly emerging styles. Richly illustrated with color photographs, this book showcases haute couture for the African continent. The visual impact of fashion created and worn today in Africa comes to life here, beautifully and brilliantly.
In this luxurious volume, 60 artists from 22 African countries explore Dante's The Divine Comedy, employing a broad range of artistic media such as painting, photography, sculpture, video, installation and performance. Structured as a triptych (distinguished by differing paper stocks) in the manner of Dante's famous poem, it includes five essays tracing the many ways in which artists have updated The Divine Comedy for our times. Among the participating artists are Ghada Amer, Jo l Andrianomearisoa, Kader Attia, Sammy Balodji, Berry Bickle, Bili Bidjocka, Wim Botha, Zoulikha Bouabdellah, Mohamed Bourouissa, Nabil Boutros, Edson Chagas, Loulou Cherinet, Lawrence Chikwa, Kudzanai Chiurai, Christine Dixie, Dimitri Fagbohoun, Franck Abd-Bakar Fanny, Jellel Gasteli, P lagie Gbaguidi, Kendell Geers, Frances Goodman, Nicholas Hlobo, Ato Malinda, Julie Mehretu, Wangechi Mutu, Mwangi Hutter, Youssef Nabil, Yinka Shonibare, Pascale Marthine Tayou, Guy Tillim, Guy Wouete and Dominique Zinkp .
This new history of over 5,000 years of African art reveals its true diversity for the first time. Challenging centuries of misconceptions that have obscured the sophisticated nature of African art, Garlake focuses on seven key regions--southern Africa, Nubia, Aksum, the Niger River, West Africa, Great Zimbabwe, and the East African coast--treating each in detail and setting them in their social and historical context. Garlake is long familiar with and has extensive practical experience of both the archaeology and the art history of Africa. Using the latest research and archaeological findings, he offers exciting new insights into the works native to these areas, and he also puts forth new interpretations of several key cultures and monuments.
Acknowledging the universal allure of the African art object, this stunning book helps us to understand more about the ways in which this art was produced, used, and received.
For this series, Angolan artist Edson Chagas walked through the streets of Luanda, London and Newport, collecting discarded objects and moving them, at times slightly and in other instances significantly, before photographing them. Taken out of their context and photographed in relation to a carefully chosen background, the mundane items are turned into abstract icons that animate the city.
A selection from the series represented Angola at the 55th Venice Biennale 2013, winning the Golden Lion for Best National Participation. Chagas' works were recently shown at the Museum of Modern Art, and The Walther Collection Project Space, New York.
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Humor and Violence examines the rich history of portraying Europeans in Central African art in images ranging from heart-wrenching scenes of human trafficking to playful parodies of colonialists. Z. S. Strother contends that the dialectic of humor and violence reveals deep insights into the psychology of power and resistance that continues to operate in the region today. Her argument is built on a set of works of art and demonstrates the important role that patronage and political and social history played in their creation. Strother conveys Central African ideas about how the therapeutic power of humor can initiate social change and upset power relations between oppressors and oppressed. This analysis plunges seemingly benign figures into a maelstrom of violence and crime-rape, murder, torture, and forced labor on a massive scale. By restoring the dialectic of humor, it reveals the complicated psychological codependency of Africans and Europeans over a long period of history and maintains that art plays a mediating function in the mechanics and ethics of power.
"Majestic and beautiful looking twins, natives of Ishokun, Let me find means of eating, let me find means of drinking. Majestic and beautiful looking twins, come and give me the blessing of a child." According to Yoruba legend, the ibeji--united and inseparable twins--were sent into the world by monkeys, whose knowledge of nature's secrets surpasses that of men. Regarded as sacred, they are venerated in a cult based on statuettes, the ere ibeji, which are commissioned from master sculptors by the families of the deceased twins. The eighty works from Benin and Nigeria presented in this book reflect the incredible stylistic diversity and beauty of these silent symbols of an age-old tradition--an eloquent expression of the creative potential of African art.