Arena for Contemporary African, African-American and Caribbean Art

Sara Blokland


“Some gestures and poses are made exclusively in front of a camera. That makes the camera a unique piece of equipment. I think it is very interesting that one is able to see relationships between people take form, or surface when a camera is involved. Furthermore, posing for the camera has a unique history which is highly intertwined with technical concerns. In the past one had to sit still for a long time, due to technical requirements. People nowadays still take similar poses while modern day techniques do not ask for sitting still as long as it used to be.”

Vincent van Velsen in conversation with Sara Blokland.
Home, 2004 (detail)

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Marshall is correcting the Western canon of art from within and notably by mastering historical exquisite painting techniques sometimes mixed with delightful kitschy glitter and text.

Julia Geerlings on Kerry James Marshall

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If I Could See Your Face.


Homosexual men in Nigeria, as far as I can surmise, are constrained to practice double lives. They are men who, for the sake of survival, despite their real desires, that of being in love with fellow men, sometimes have to flirt with women, show facetious attraction to women. This duplicity is similar to facing the camera with one’s back; of being shamed by law and morality; shamed to the extent that the camera bears the reflection of something monstrous, not to be seen.

A moving story by Emmanuel Iduma
Portrait of the writer.

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Buhlebezwe Siwani


“Well you know, sometimes I get so irritated with audiences, especially male audiences who will say stupid things like “that’s a nice ass” or something like that. For me, I think as long as the performer knows exactly what the intention is with the body everybody will get over everything else. There are some people who just don’t get it, and that’s ok too. I know what my body is loaded with. I know what it is and I know how to use it. I know I’ve gotten to the point where I know how it works. I don’t necessarily care anymore.”

Buhlebezwe Siwani in conversation with Candice Allison.

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What can art do?


Successful artworks have the ability to instruct or persuade the populace, to give new meanings or perspectives on issues, to provide new knowledge or to build ones capacity in empathy for a certain cause. The use of art can provide a setting in which people can discuss issues, form connections, and potentially take action. Just how much people take away from this experience is difficult to tell.

Join the discussion with Craig Halliday.
Brian Omolo, Insurance Policy.

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December/January  edition 2016/2017.

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