In the exhibition Yesternow. Zwischen Jetset und Vergessen/ Yesternow. Between Jet Set and Oblivion curated by the artist Manuela Sambo, contemporary African visual artists and their works are invited to take part in the discourse around the friction arising between the incredible pace of economic growth and a partly very recent history of war in their countries.
The main emphasis and artistic aspiration of the show is the negotiation of modern African identities in the global context. Manuela Sambo explores the question to what extent African art was and is political – and what function it performs for coming generations.To address this issue, artists from among other places Nigeria, Angola, Ghana, Togo, Senegal, Ruanda, and Benin are invited to take part in the discussion with their works. All participants share the quality that they are bridge builders between the negotiations described above. As much as they are rooted in and shaped by the social reality and politics of their respective countries of origin between the 1960’s and 1980’s, they still have all found a cosmopolitan centre of their lives between Europe and the African continent. The title Yesternow: Zwischen Jetset und Vergessen already makes reference to the discrepancy and symbioses between the modern afropolitan jet set mentality of the young generation and the politicised African art of the 20th century, which was still informed by the political and social upheavals of (post-)colonial phases in government. The exhibition provides a panoramic perspective on discourses in the artistic space between political past and politicised internationality.
The exhibition is aimed at sensitising the audience for the transcontinental interwovenness of art and politics, deconstructing conservative concepts of contemporary African art and to present a realistic and future-oriented ACTUAL state of African art.