Tag Archives: art

See What’s Coming: Investec Cape Town Art Fair

Investec Cape Town Art Fair honours emerging artists including Dennis Osadebe and Prince Gyasi.

Investec Cape Town Art Fair showcases a diversity of work that represents the forefront of contemporary art from Africa to the world, and the world to Cape Town.

The city boasts a vibrant arts scene, driven by the top galleries on the African continent and beyond. Thanks to its diverse cultural heritage and geographic beauty, Cape Town is a compelling destination for both art world professionals and collectors alike.

Galleries showcasing their artists include Goodman Gallery; Christopher Moller, Nil Gallery, 99 Loop Gallery, Ayyam Gallery, October Gallery and Addis Fine Art.

Dennis Osadebe

African Art Guide: Don’t Miss Tyburn Gallery’s Exhibition of Mohau Modisakeng

Mohau Modisakeng: Bophirima
10 June – 17 September
Preview: Thursday 9th June, 6-8:30pm

Mohau Modisakeng-Tyburn-Gallery-London-TheGlowingColours-Africa
Mohau Modisakeng, Endabeni 2, 2015. Inkjet print, 150 x 200 cm. Copyright the artist, Courtesy Tyburn Gallery.

Tyburn Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new works by Mohau Modisakeng.

This is the first time the London-based gallery is hosting the South African artist.

The press release states that Modisakeng is one of the most promising young South African artists today. His practice reflects both upon the political and his own personal experiences of growing up in Apartheid and Post-Apartheid South Africa, with central themes which revolve around violence, labour, security and ritual.

The artist who initially trained as a sculptor, uses the technique of the self-portrait – through large-scale photographs, performance and video installations – to address issues such as his own identity and the political processes within his country. He uses his body to explore the influence of South Africa’s violent history, creating powerful and poetic invocations where the body is transformed into a poignant marker of collective history. Modisakeng explains: “The real work for me is in relating the visual signs and symbols of the abstract – be it in music or in my dreams – into a narrative that resonates with the collective social experience.” 

The exhibition is titled Bophirima from the artist’s mother tongue Setswana, meaning West or where the sun sets, also meaning twilight or before dusk. In two new series of photographic self-portraits, Endabeni and Ga Etsho, Modisakeng reflects on the legacy of colonialism and its effect on post-independence societies in Africa. The social, political and economic systems inherited from colonial rule have remained entrenched, with the result that the lives of most of the population, other than those of the new elites, have not changed markedly.  Economic resources continue to be in control of a small minority, with the overwhelming majority of people struggling to make a living in a climate in which the odds remain stacked against them.

In South Africa, Apartheid has left an ongoing legacy of political corruption which has hampered efforts to address historical injustices. Levels of economic inequality remain among the worst in the world, a situation which has worsened in the face of mass unemployment and poor economic growth. Widespread poverty and the failure to redress the injustices of the past have contributed to an environment in which anxiety, unrest and conflict predominate. The ethnic, political and social tensions caused by centuries of colonial rule are being exploited by competing political forces seeking to gain or maintain access to the mostly exploitative profits resulting from a growing global appetite for African commodities.

Bophirima will be the first solo exhibition of Mohau Modisakeng in the UK.

Mohau Modisakeng was born in Soweto, Johannesburg in 1986 and lives and works between Johannesburg and Cape Town.  He studied at Michaelis School of Fine Art, Cape Town.

The artist has exhibited his art widely and has won multiple awards. In 2016 he was awarded the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Visual Art, the most prestigious award in Africa.  Modisakeng’s work has been exhibited at Kunstraum Innsbruck, Austria (2015); MoCADA, New York (2015); Museum of Fine Art, Boston (2014); 21C Museum, Kentucky, Massachusetts (2014); IZIKO South African National Gallery, Cape Town (2014); Saatchi Gallery, London (2012); and the Dak’Art Biennale, Dakar (2012), among others.

He has contributed to the group exhibition of the South African pavilion at the 56thVenice Biennale (2015). His works form part of large public collections, such as the Johannesburg Art Gallery, the Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town, the Saatchi Gallery and the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA).

Artists’ Village at National Arts Theatre Demolished by Government

On  January 22 the Artists’ Village at the National Arts Theatre was demolished as ordered by the Director of the National Arts Theatre, Kabiru Yusuf.

According to the Government the Village had become a hive for illegal and illicit activities. The artists however are disputing the accusation as they hold the view that the Government has no founding proof that such take place and also the space serves no commercial use versus the current free art space.


Artist, Justin Chinedu Ezirim, used Facebook to share his disbelief:

Let it be on record before the battle begins, that the DG (Kabiru Yusuf) of the National Arts Theatre has become a complete nuisance to the Artists community. And since he is a representative of the Federal Government, his recent action further tells us that this present government is bent on completely destroying the arts and creative expressions.

As we were rejoicing with Jelili Atiku on his release from Kirikiri, the Artistes village, which is annexed to the national theatre witnessed a demolition in the early hours of yesterday, Saturday 23rd January 2016. The space, which can be readily considered as the only space that still brews creativity within the entire structure of the national theatre, whose glory is constantly sinking into the muddy grounds surrounding it.


Eyewitnesses reported that the DG in company of a battalion of fully armed policemen, including the DPO came to the artists village with bulldozers at about 5am yesterday and started demolishing workshops and structures that housed veteran actors, painters, sculptors, drums etc. without prior notice of demolition.

As if this wasn’t bad enough, the DG ordered that anyone pleading or reacting to this move should be shot. Presently some artistes are receiving treatment at the hospital.
In fear of the reaction of the angry youths at the village, the DG brought out a pistol, shot in the air, and once again ordered the police to continue shooting before running away from the scene.
The ugly incidence have rendered a lot of the artistes mentally homeless and destroyed their priceless intellectual properties.

This is another call to action for the general public, the symbolism of constant menace to the artists in our society, should make us all worry at the level of inconsideration that is yet to hit many of us within the larger society. In the name of advancement, cruelty is becoming the proposed weapon here. I am highly worried because obviously this is an order coming from the minister Lai Muhammed who visited the edifice few weeks ago.


I, like many others began our careers in this village, this is a very sad news because we still got our memories imbued in those demolished edifices, and the destruction of that space may lead to trauma and a creative discontent which the state is not willing to go into with its creative citizens.

This madness is becoming a norm, and as you know, when some shy lucks are given power, they misuse it and become tyrants to the society. This is the case of the DG of the national theatre. He has called for a battle and he will get it beyond his wildest imagination.


Art is a profession and not a hobby I insist. Artists should be respected just as other professionals I insist. It’s time to speak truth directly to power.

#‎DanceIsAweapon‬ ‪#‎thisisartless‬ ‪#‎saveartistesvillage‬ ‪#‎lifeofadancer‬ ‪#‎tradac‬ ‪#‎NDF‬ ‪#‎eraoflegends‬ ‪#‎squad1productions‬ ‪#‎justdancestudio‬ ‪#‎respecttheart‬ ‪#‎kabibumustgo‬

A meeting has been scheduled this week at Freedom Park in Lagos.
Photo Credit
: Facebook – Squad1productions

Nigerian Art: Multilayered Memories -The Art Of Njideka Akunyili Crosby

Njideka Akunyili Crosby has become a household name in the art world and most especially in the contemporary African art market. Her complex, multilayered works have become a point of reflection for buyers and African art enthusiasts of  African descent as it mirrors contemporary transcultural identity. Akunyili Crosby’s large-scale figurative compositions are drawn from the artist’s multilayered memories and experiences.

The Nigerian-born visual artist who currently works in Los Angeles was brought up in a small town of  New Haven in Enugu, Nigeria before moving to the United States at the age of 16. Her cultural identity therefore naturally comes through strongly in her work and possesses certain hybrid qualities.

Her multilayered works are a combination of drawing, painting, printmaking in acrylic, paste, colour pencils, charcoal, marble dust, collage and transfers which are inspired by her Nigerian heritage and American culture.

The LA-based artist populates her work with images of family and friends, in scenarios with details derived from everyday domestic experiences in Nigeria and America.

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“Nigeria is almost a third character in my work,” she said during an interview with CNN “A lot of my work is about investigating my love for Nigeria and my life in America.” Njideka-Akunyili-Crosby-umezebi-nigerian-art-TheGlowingColours

“I met my husband at college and there was some anxiety that if I married outside my culture I would lose my identity, but there is a space in my work where these things come together” – Njideka Akunyili Crosby


See more works on Njideka Akunyili Crosby’s multilayered memories.

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Photo Credit: Njideka Akunyili Crosby

Art Masterpiece! Check Out Rihanna’s New Album Cover


Oh- No it’s not your ordinary and average entertainment industry party. Rihanna unveiled her album cover art at an exhibition. Badgalriri stunned guests as she showed up to her album cover art launch at Mama Gallery last night wearing a silky nighty and an inky robe. Rihanna hosted a private gallery event to reveal the art for her new studio album. Strictly sticking to no rules, we love the unconventional party outfit. The art cover is produced in collaboration with the artist Roy Nachum, the cover red-washes a young RiRi, who grasps a balloon in one hand. A gold crown covers her eyes.

For the exhibition, ​Billboard reports that Rihanna commissioned the writer Chloe Mitchell to inscribe a poem in Braille on the canvas. The album, which will be titled ​ANTI, has no release date. Rihanna told the crowd that “[s]ometimes the ones who have the sight are the blindest.” (It’s RETWEETABLE)! And while the album cover comes without new record as of yet, Rihanna dropped a few tantalising ‘grams with her 27.1 million followers.

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#ANTi #antiR8

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[EXCLUSIVE] All Photos from #ReleReadings With Toni Kan and Victor Ehikhamenor at Rele Art Gallery

Lagos-based art gallery Rele is setting the bar higher and higher. With Adenrele Sonariwo as the director, the modern gallery launched a new project,  #ReleReadings (click here) last Sunday which featured Nigerian award winning writer, poet and journalist, Toni Kan reading alongside, award winning artist, photographer and writer, Victor Ehikhamenor. The art established has also been featured on Nigeria’s ThisDay Style and hailed for making the arts accessible to a bigger audience, investing in art education and staging thought-provoking, engaging exhibitions.

The #ReleReadings event was fun-filled as seen from the exclusive photos and the winner of the raffle draw got to receive a special art piece. Trust the gallery visitors to step out in unique style to celebrate art and culture.

Catch all the photos from Rele‘s #ReleReadings in the gallery below:


Photo credit: Rele Gallery


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#TransformationTuesday| Spot the difference on this Image of Lupita Nyong’o

Artist Creates Lifelike Digital Painting of Lupita Nyong’o


Wow, check out what this artist did to Lupita’s red carpet image.

This impressive art work was made by Rwandan artist Manzi Jackson. The Oscar-winning actress has since spotted the video and shared to her followers. As expected the video showing Lupita Nyong’o transform digitally has gone viral.

Check out the life-like digital painting of Lupita Nyong’o and tell us what you think.

Lupita Nyong’o-design-art-TheGlowingColours Lupita Nyong’o-design-art-TheGlowingColours



Win $100,000! Calling Artists & Curators to Apply for the Abraaj Group Art Prize 2016

You can win the Abraaj Group Art Prize 2016 if you apply now!


The Abraaj Group is a leading investor operating in global growth markets. The company has announced an Open Call for artists and curators to apply for the eighth edition of The Abraaj Group Art Prize. The artist that wins the prize will receive 100,000 USD commission, which will be included in the growing collection of The Abraaj Group Art Prize Collection which now comprises 27 sculpture, installation, painting, photography and film.

The Abraaj Group Art Prize is unique in its format, awarding talented artists based on a proposal, rather than a completed work. Mid-career African artists that have participated in dynamic exhibitions and produced significant bodies of work in the past two to three years are invited to apply for the Prize, by submitting proposals for new, imaginative, original works.

The Prize: Following an intensive jury process, one winning artist is awarded a 100,000 USD commission, and three shortlisted artists receive a cash prize; all four artists go on to present their work in a thematic group exhibition led by a Guest Curator at Art Dubai, a leading global art fair, March 1619, 2016.

Experienced international and regional curators are invited to apply to become Guest Curator of the 2016 Prize; a dynamic role which includes curating the group exhibition at Art Dubai 2016 and producing an accompanying publication.

We encourage African artists to apply, the experience may be worth more than the prize.


Congratulations! Bisi Silva Is The Artistic Director Of Bamako Encounters, African Biennale Of Photography, 2015

We are so thrilled to share this news to you! Congratulations to Nigerian curator  Bisi Silva on her new appointment as the Artistic Director of the 10th Bamako Encounters, African Biennale of Photography.

Read the full Press Release here:

The Ministry of Culture, Mali and Institut français are pleased to announce the appointment of Bisi Silva as Artistic Director of the 10th Bamako Encounters, African Biennale of Photography, from 31 October to 31 December 2015. Silva is both an independent curator and the founding director of the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos.

For the 10th Edition of the Bamako Encounters titled TELLING TIME, Silva plans to explore the complex and multifaceted relationship between images and time, taking both the country’s rich tradition of storytelling and its recent political upheavals as points of departure. “Mali is an extraordinary country,” Silva observes. “Since my first visit to Bamako in 2001, the city has animated my understanding of photography’s vital role in exploring notions of time—be it from an aesthetic, political, or theoretical perspective. The Bamako Encounters is the most important platform for African photography and I am honoured by the opportunity to draw on the working relationships with artists and organisations in the city as well as from across the continent, that I have built over the years. I plan to develop a robust programme that highlights local practices, and situates them within continental and global contexts.”

Regarding Bisi Silva’s appointment, the biennale’s Executive Director Samuel Sidibé remarks, “The forthcoming edition of the biennale marks the tenth anniversary of this important event. We look forward to both working with Bisi Silva on the realisation of her exciting vision for the next biennale, and to the possibilities the event offers for future generations of African photographers.”

The GlowingColours
About Bisi Silva
Bisi Silva co-curated The Progress of Love, a transcontinental collaboration between the Menil Collection, Houston; Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, Missouri; and CCA, Lagos (2012–13), J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere: Moments of Beauty, Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki (2011); and the 2nd Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art, Greece; Praxis: Art in Times of Uncertainty(2009). She was one of the curators for the Dak’Art Biennale, Senegal (2006). A frequent participant in international conferences and symposia, Silva has published in journals and art magazines including Artforum, Third Text, The Exhibitionist, and ArtsouthAfrica. Most recently, she edited the comprehensive monograph, J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere published by CCA, Lagos (2014). Bisi Silva sits on the editorial/advisory boards of Art South Africa, N.Paradoxa: International Feminist Art Journal, and ContemporaryAnd. Silva was a member of the international jury for the Pinchuk Art Centre’s Future Generation Art Prize (2014), as well as the 55th Venice Biennale (2013).

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Exclusive| All Photos from Dinaka Gallery’s Opening of Sensory Experience By Sor Sen

Sor Sen was born on the 24th August, 1985. He is a graduate from the, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Fine Arts (2008) and doubles with a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) Painting degree.
He has participated in many group exhibitions, competitions and international workshops. Sor Sen’s works engages social, cultural narratives of his immediate environment employing line a fundamental element of art for expression with strong stylistic influences from the post impressionist artists. Sor Sen’s paintings are sensitive yet evocative creations, which dramatizes his style. He lives and practices art in Abuja.

Awards / Prizes
2009: First prize winner, second edition of Egypt embassy, Abuja Art contest.
2010: Second position, professional category 2010, 3rd national visual art
competition. Organized by, National Gallery of Art
2011: Third prize winner, Life in my city art festival, Enugu
2012: Second position, National Visual art competition, professional category, organized
by National Gallery of Art, Nigeria
2013: Special recognition. Olusegun Obasanjo presidential library national art
Competition (OOPL) Ogun state
2013: Second position, Visual arts competition organized by embassy of Spain, Abuja
2013: Fourth prize winner, Experience Nigeria art show, organized by Africa Arts
Resource Centre, (AARC) Lagos

The sight of an artwork is capable of inducing critical thinking. It is not always seeing the world as representing the world as it exists and sometimes it can also stretch our ‘mindscape’ to see more than our physical eyes.
Sensory experience, within the literary milieu is described as an action that promotes consciousness of one or more of the five human senses: Hearing, sight, smell, touch and taste.
The conception of this exhibition aims to offer a survey of my body of work developed over time. Sor Sen’s works are an exploration of a conscious and unconscious artistic exploration that grant meaning to the essentials of living informed by my experiences gained through social interactions , readings on philosophy, poetry, patriotism, travel and history.
These artworks are not a purely objective description of the exterior nor an absolute subjective responses but an interface between the two. They bear social, moral and cultural values of the society. They also reflect the times and circumstances of their creation.
This exhibition is a personal artistic sojourn of years of practice, the endless routines, the hours of doubt and the tenacious overcoming of obstacles endured.
These works seek to engage the viewer on a personal visual vocabulary on social and cultural structures of the society as encountered by Sor Sen.
I am however optimistic that, a view of these works will elicit responses that is mental, perceptual and sensuous.


Image: Sor Sen

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