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Contemporary African Art Since 1980

To address contemporary African art is necessarily to address the African diaspora and its attendant thorny issues of postcolonial and identity politics: what "is" contemporary African art, and who qualifies for its rubric? "Contemporary African Art Since 1980" is the first major survey of the work of contemporary African artists from diverse locations and generations who work either in or outside of Africa, but whose activities engage the complexities of that continent.

Assembled by Okwui Enwezor, and organized in chronological order, it incorporates all major media--painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, installation, drawing, collage--as well as genres from the popular to the visionary, conceptual to formalist, abstract to figurative, linking sensibilities in order to erode the prevailing (and increasingly irrelevant) binaries of center and periphery, vernacular and academic, urban and non-urban forms, indigenous and diasporic. The book's chronological structure essentially pivots on Africa's many transitions, from the end of the postcolonial utopias during the 1980s to the economic, technological and cultural shifts catalyzed by globalization. Among the many contributing artists are Kader Attia, Tayo Adenaike, Luis Basto, Claudia Cristovao, Georges Adeagbo, Samuel Fosso, Barthelemy Toguo, Cheri Samba, Ghada Amer, Chris Echeta, Mona Mazouk, Julie Mehretu, Hentie Van der Merwe, Donald Odita, Bruce Onobrakpeya, Kolade Oshinowo, Olu Amoda, Sane Wadu, Malick Sidibe, Victor Ekpuk, Yinka Shonibare, Iba Ndiaye, Andries Botha, Candice Breitz, Marlene Dumas, William Kentridge, Robin Rhode, Sue Williamson, Amir Nour, Moustapha Dime, Fatima Tuggar, Richard Onyango and Berry Bickle.

Okwui Enwezor is a Nigerian-born American writer and curator, and one of the world's foremost authorities on contemporary African art. Among his books are "Reading the Contemporary: African Art, from Theory to the Marketplace," "Mega Exhibitions: Antinomies of a Transnational Global Form" and"Archive Fever: Uses of the Document in Contemporary Art."

Enwezor, O. and Okeke-Agulu, C., Contemporary African Art Since 1980, Damiani editore, Bologna 2009, ISBN 9788862080927

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