Arena for Contemporary African, African-American and Caribbean Art

Archive: articles

Speak, Mnemosyne: a groupshow of young female artists

Tich1Exhibition poster designed Wynona Mutisi, image Nothando Chiwanga

“Speak, Mnemosyne” is the title of an exhibition curated by Lifang Zhang. The show took place within the National Arts Merit Awards (NAMA) event at the Harare International Conference Centre (HICC) in Zimbabwe’s capital city in the final weekend of February.
Writer Barnabas Ticha Muvhuti caught up with the curator of the exhibition to unpack the show, and discuss the ups and downs encountered in the build up to the event and on the day of the show.

Exhibition poster, designed by Wynona Mutisi, image in the poster is work by Nothando Chiwanga

Read more »

Kurt Nahar


At different times in his life, he experiences inexplicable circumstances whose mysteries usually only unfold after a few years, allowing Nahar to understand more deeply and develop an understanding for complexities. He is very clear about his collection of material: “I carry that force of spirituality on me as backpack so that everything that comes on my path and yells something at me becomes my acrylic paint and my canvas.”

Miguel E. Keerveld on the work of the Surinamese artist Kurt Nahar
Wake Up and Live, 2012

Read more »

Personhood in the paintings of contemporary Nigerian artists.

Tonia Nneji, Far from Here, 2020,

With the gaining of independence of several African countries, Africans in photographs began to have more and more of a say in how they were photographed. This agency, this power to dictate how they wished to be seen became entrenched in the practices of African photographers after the colonial era.

What does any of it have to do with painting?

Joseph Omoh Ndukwu on personhood in the paintings of contemporary Nigerian artists.
Tonia Nneji Far from Here, 2020

Read more »

Body Vessel Clay: Black Women, Ceramics & Contemporary Art


Clay as a material is malleable, thus it is able to be shaped in the artist’s vision. So, pottery can become a personal or political manifestation. As well as the aesthetic heritage, pottery is a record of the world around it, the zeitgeist and the society it was borne from. This is why recording and archiving these works are not only important for the art world but vital for history.

Christabel Johanson on Black Women Ceramics
Two Legged Vessels by Bisila Noha, Credit Thomas Broadhead for OmVed Gardens

Read more »

Marcel Pinas: more than an artist

Marcel Pinas, Totem, 2009.

When he left (the Edna Manly College in) Jamaica, he knew he wanted to support the creativity of young people in particular and give them the opportunity to be self-sufficient. He knew he had to come up with projects that do justice to the Maroon culture. In doing so, he had to involve the population of the region as much as possible.

Rob Perrée writes about the remarkable work of the Surinamese artist Marcel Pinas
Totem, 2009

Read more »