At Dak’Art 2014 …
Work hard to party hard: this year’s Dakar Biennale generated an incredible energy as members of the international art world came to Dakar and joined the communities on the ground to see Dak’Art and a plethora of accompanying events and, last but not least, to party.
We had really worked hard to bring our first print issue (in French and English), specifically dedicated to Dak’Art 2014, to town. One of the highlights is the SPOTLIGHT on Nomusa Makhubu who won the prize awarded by the French creative hub Le Fresnoy – studio national des arts contemporains at the Dakar Biennale. And not to forget: a MANIFESTO, drawn up by a group of artists and cultural producers from Dakar. Cédric Vincent revisits the beginnings of the Biennale in Dakar. Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi, co-curator of Dak’Art 2014, provides insights into this year’s Biennale, the artists represented and the theme Producing the Common. Mauro Petroni, initiator and coordinator of Dak’Art OFF, talks about how the OFF has grown. The young photographer Ibrahima Thiam talks to C& about his Collection Photo Souvenir. Mame-Diarra Niang gives insights into Dakar’s changing landscapes.
And to celebrate our newspaper and C&’s first birthday, we invited everybody to our special C& party and our first big party on the continent.
We are honored that so many joined forces with us and came, and stayed. More than 300 artists, curators, directors, gallery owners, filmmakers from Dakar, New York, Lagos, Berlin, Paris, Cape Town and elsewhere turned the C& party into the party we had hoped for. It felt great to talk, discuss, debate and dance together (We didn’t start this newsletter with an Andy Warhol-reference without a reason).
The comments we heard the most during the opening week of Dak’Art came from readers, cultural producers and artists alike who approached us to say, “The newspaper is great and at the same time accessible …“ and, “Thank you for the party, it was actually the official Dak’Art party…!” Nothing could have made us happier than receiving so much gratitude and enthusiasm. Thanks again as well to the Afrikadaa team who invited us to take part in their round table about African art publishing.
Dak’Art was a fantastic opportunity for exchange: installing C& more firmly on the set of cultural production from African perspectives and at the same time broadening our own network with new contacts with artists, writers, supporters locally and internationally …