A lot has been happening... and there’s more to come. We are looking back at an intense year with both very enriching and very sad moments. One thing which was always consistent are the skills of our writers from all around the world. Here is a little selection of the best stories of 2019.
(Clockwise) Charl Landvreugd, Performance “movt nr. 9: Holland Mijn Mars”, 2017. Photo credit: Aad Hoogendoorn for Witte de With; François Knoetze: Core Dump, Dakar featuring Bamba Diangne, Film still: Anton Scholtz, 2018. Courtesy François Knoetze; Felicia Abban. Self Portrait IV (Detail); Ja’Tovia Gary, Image from Giverny I (Négresse Impériale), 2018. Courtesy the artist.
Zoe Samudzi has co-penned As Black as Resistance with William C. Anderson. In the book, they show the centrality of anti-Blackness to the foundational violence of the United States and make the case for a new program of self-defense and transformative politics for Black Americans. At the end of 2018, Samudzi curated a show in Oakland, California, at Ashara Ekundayo, a gallery dedicated exclusively to Black female artists. In this interview, Will Furtado speaks to Samudzi about institutional space to focus on Black womxn’s cultural production, narrow representations of the African continent, and the exceptionalization of Blackness through major art awards.
Ja’Tovia Gary, Image from Giverny I (Négresse Impériale), 2018. Courtesy the artist.
In our latest series – Female Pioneers – we look at female artists from Africa who have made major contributions to art on the continent. This time we reflect on the work of Ghanaian photographer Felicia Abban. In the 1950s she started as her father’s apprentice in a seaside town in the Western Region of Ghana. She would, however, go on to become one of the continent’s most respected photo artists of her day – on the payroll of Kwame Nkrumah and a detailed analyst of her country’s transformation.
The Netherlands was one of the most belligerent European colonial empires. Driven by commerce and spread over four continents, their imperial ambitions changed the lives and cultures of millions of people, from Indonesia to the Caribbean. In this series we speak to artists and arts practitioners dealing with the legacies of that empire, in the Netherlands and beyond. In this interview with artist Charl Landvreugd, Will Furtado discusses the specificity of the Afro-Dutch art discourse.
Charl Landvreugd, Performance « movt nr. 9: Holland Mijn Mars », 2017. Photo credit: Aad Hoogendoorn for Witte de With
On the occasion of the exhibition “Diago: The Pasts of this Afro-Cuban Present” at the Lowe Art Museum in Miami, C&AL spoke with curator Alejandro de la Fuente about Cuba’s official history, the current Cuban art scene and the role of Afro-Cuban artists.