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Painting a new picture of Africa

Remi: Pierre-Christophe Gam. Image courtesy of the artist
Kolade: Pierre-Christophe Gam. Image courtesy of the artist.

There will be many elements of a self portrait – idealist, realist and all the ‘ists’ in between – as the inaugural Art Africa Fair, which opens in February, helps paint a new picture of the continent.

Issuing a call for submissions on Wednesday the art fair’s organisers asked artists and gallerists “to propose work that challenges parochial perceptions surrounding Africa and provokes alternative artistic visions of the continent as defined by individual, lived experiences”.

Developed by curators Salimata Diop, Uche Okpa-Iroha, Pierre-Christophe Gam, Thembinkosi Goniwe and Ruzy Rusike, Africa’s “first fully curated international art fair” takes place at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town from February 24 to March 5.

“Rather than trying to locate something specific to the continent, our curatorial framework depends on engaging a multiplicity of subjective curatorial and artistic narratives that tell their own story,” the organisers said in a statement.

Gold: Pierre-Christophe Gam. Image courtesy of the artist

They describe their approach as “an attempt to transform vernacular African ideas into tangible expressions, to challenge stereotypical understandings and to introduce, propagate and take responsibility for new representations about Africa, from Africa.

“Our story starts with us. It is an exciting journey, and who better to tell it?” says Okpa-Iroha.

Artists, photographers, designers, galleries, groups and institutions working in any medium are invited to propose work for the exhibition. The deadline for applications is January 10.

More information is available via email to [email protected] or by calling (+27) 021 465 9108.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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