Smithsonian Releases Images of Benin Bronzes for Public Use and More News

Friday, 28 February 2020

SMITHSONIAN RELEASES IMAGES OF BENIN BRONZES FOR PUBLIC USE. The bronzes are among 2.8 million images that having entered the public domain are now available on Smithsonian Open Access. As part of the institute’s goal to promote access to its resources and increase public engagement with its collections, visitors to the website can download, share, and reuse these images without asking for permission. [Hyperallergic]

TAFETA EXHIBITS BABAJIDE OLATUNJI AND NIYI OLAGUNJU AT TEFAF. For the first time in its 32-year history, The European Fine Art Fair (TEFAF) has a booth dedicated to contemporary art from the African continent. Tafeta will present Olatunji’s Tribal Marks Series and Olagunju’s ‘Baga Nimba’ sculptures. “Collectors of tribal pieces have yet to embrace contemporary art fully,” says Ayo Adeyinka, Tafeta’s founder. “Maastricht would be the perfect place to find out if they finally will.” [Financial Times]

MORE SIGNS OF AFRICA’S EXPANDING COLLECTOR BASE AT 1-54 MARRAKECH 2020. “We have an eclectic group of collectors. There aren’t more French collectors than there are Africans. We are getting the best of each side of the world coming to Marrakech. This year, collectors that regularly come to London and New York have come to Marrakech for the first time.” says founder, Touria El Glaoui. [ARTnews]

AFTER SIX YEARS AND 100 PIECES, MICHAEL SOI FINISHES HIS ‘CHINA LOVES AFRICA’ SERIES. The Kenyan artist in these satirical paintings depicts China as the latest in a string of imperialistic powers eager to plunder Africa’s natural resources. He hopes the pieces will keep the conversation around China-Africa perilous relations alive long into the future. [New York Times]

CHIMURENGA LAUNCHES FESTAC ’77 PUBLICATION IN DAKAR. The book, titled FESTAC ’77, addresses the planetary scale of the second world festival of black arts in 1977, as well as the personal and artistic encounters that emerged from the event. The presentation of the book will hold tomorrow at the RAW Material Company in Dakar. [TSA]


Bandjoun Art Station in Cameroon. Photo: Etienne Nsom. Courtesy of C&
Bandjoun Art Station in Cameroon. Photo: Etienne Nsom. Courtesy of C&

Bandjoun Art Station: Cameroonian artists Barthélémy Toguo and Germain Noubi give back to the continent through this small-town art institution.

Tate and MoMa ‘playing catch up’ with modern African art. Touria El Glaoui says western institutions are belatedly investing in contemporary art from Africa.

Collectors flock to the 1-54 Art Fair in Marrakesh as the demand for African art soars, sparking concerns about a masterwork exodus.

Brooklyn honours African art by placing it amidst its other collections. The exhibition, ‘African Arts–Global Conversations,’ seeks to “fill in the blanks that are still present in museums and art history books.”