African film refers to a corpus of work whose geographical and historical range remains ambiguous. African film criticism emerged in the late 1980s–early 1990s as a distinct body of research within the Anglophone academy. Landmark early texts, such as Manthia Diawara’s African Cinema: Politics and Culture...
French, Moroccan, 20th – 21st century, female.
Born 1971, in Paris, France.
Photography, video, film, installation, sculpture.
The Tangier-based artist Yto Barrada studied political science and history at the Sorbonne in Paris before she moved to New York to study photography at the International Center of Photography. Her practise focuses on Tangier and the physical, political, and psychological barriers its inhabitants face, as well as the oppositional forces between the West and East. Her photographs investigate the attractions of Western Europe for the people in Tangier, while also demystifying and de-exoticizing Western ideas of the East and Northern Africa....
Nigerian sculptor, painter, and film maker, active in England. Born in Nigeria, Douglas Camp grew up in England but continued to visit Nigeria regularly. She was educated at the California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, CA, (1979–80) and the Central School of Art and Design, London (...
Moroccan, 20th century, male.
Active also active in France.
Born 26 April 1934, in El Jadida.
Painter, draughtsman, lithographer, collage artist, film maker.
André Elbaz studied at Rabat's school of graphic art while at the same time taking drama classes at the city's theatre school. He began experimenting with collage while making posters for his theatre group, Mazagan, in El Jadida. Following a trip to France in ...
American, 21st century, male.
Born 1973, in Chicago (Illinois), United States.
Sculpture, installation, performance, urban interventions.
Theaster Gates is a Chicago-based artist, urban planner and developer, musician, and director of Arts and Public Life at the University of Chicago. His practise serves as a catalyst for social engagement and aims to instigate political and spatial change....
South African, 20th–21st century, male.
Born May 1968 in Johannesburg.
Conceptual, installation, performance and video artist.
Influenced by his identity as a white Afrikaner growing up during apartheid, Kendell Geers’ artistic production reveals questions of a political, ethical, aesthetic and spiritual nature.
2002, Documenta 11...
South African installation, performance, and video artist and photographer. Geers is part of a generation of African artists who emerged during the global expansion of the art world in the 1990s. Born into a white working-class family, he studied fine arts at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg from ...
Sarah Urist Green
Chilean architect, public interventionist, installation artist, photographer and filmmaker, active in the USA since 1982. He first studied architecture at the Universidad de Chile in Santiago, then filmmaking at the Instituto Chileno-Norteamericano de Cultura, Santiago, concluding in 1981. Throughout his career, Jaar has consistently endeavored to highlight and give visual form to complex ideas and incomprehensible tragedies. In over fifty projects he termed ‘public interventions’, Jaar conducted extensive research around the world to create site-specific works that reflect political and social realities near and far from his sites of exhibition. He created works—in gallery spaces and in public, often engaging spectator involvement—that harness and reappropriate the power of images through various and calculated strategies of representation....
South African draughtsman, film maker and sculptor. The son of one of South Africa’s most prominent anti-apartheid lawyers, Kentridge first studied politics and African Studies at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg (1973–6) before studying Fine Art at Johannesburg Art Foundation (1976–8...
British painter, sculptor, conceptual artist, performance artist, video and film maker, of Rhodesian birth. He studied at the Chelsea School of Art, London, from 1946 to 1950. His concern from 1954 was not with the production of art objects as an end in itself but with various processes and consequently with the recording in three dimensions of sequences of events and of patterns of knowledge. In ...
Senegalese film maker. Over the course of his brief career Mambety developed a body of work remarkable for its poetic sensibility and narrative complexities. His films register many of the same concerns as his West African film-making contemporaries Ousmane Sembene and Souleymane Cissé (b...
(b Umlazi, Durban, July 19, 1972). South African photographer and video and installation artist. Muholi has identified as a black Zulu lesbian and her artworks engage with her own identity at the same time as they seek to integrate LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex) identities into mainstream acceptance in South Africa and elsewhere. Muholi is part of a generation of African artists for whom photography remains a powerful tool for socio-political commentary in the post-colonial and post-apartheid era. In ...
Kenyan and German performance artist, installation artist, photographer, and video artist. Mwangi’s work addresses notions of cultural difference, social conventions, racial categories, and national identity, primarily through an autobiographical lens. She has often utilized her body as a subject and engaged with questions related to her own African-European heritage. In ...
Sylvester Okwunodu Ogbechie
Nollywood specifically refers to the Nigerian video-film industry and generally to similar late 20th- and 21st-century video movie industries in other African countries such as Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania built on the populist and commercial model of the Nigerian example. Nollywood originated in Nigeria at the end of the 20th century as a national media form that emerged free from the control of the state and has subsequently become the most visible cultural machine on the African continent. The explosion of video production in Nollywood and other African video movie industries arguably represents the most significant cultural phenomenon in Africa in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. During this period Nollywood grew rapidly to become the one of the largest film-producing industries in the world in terms of actual films produced. With the production of an average of ...
Carol Magee and Kimberly Bobier
Angolan sculptor, painter, and film maker. Self-taught, Olé began exhibiting his work in the late 1960s. Since that time, he has participated internationally in numerous exhibitions, though he exhibited quite infrequently in the late 1970s and early 1980s. During this period he focused on making films, producing almost a whole one per year between ...
French, 20th – 21st century, male.
Born 14 September 1964, in Oran, Algeria.
Draughtsman, sculptor, video artist. Multimedia.
Neo-Conceptual Art, Art Narratif, Esthétique Relationnelle.
Philippe Parreno studied at the École des Beaux-Arts in Grenoble from 1980 until 1986. He worked with Philippe Perrin, Pierre Joseph, Bernard Joisten and Dominique Gonzalez-Foester on several occasions in exhibitions such as ...
Australian installation artist, born in Sierra Leone. Resident in Australia from 1972, Piccinini graduated in 1988 from the Australian National University, Canberra, with a BA and then from the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, in 1991 with a BA (Painting). She produced images and objects that embodied imaginary evolutionary jumps and mutations (see, for example, ...
South African, 20th–21st century, male.
Born 5 February 1958, in Pretoria.
Printmaker, sculptor, watercolourist, curator.
Joachim Schönfeldt spent his childhood in Windhoek, Namibia, and graduated with a fine arts degree from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, in 1980. He began his career as a researcher into old African art and curios and spent time during the 1980s as a curator of the Meneghelli Holdings. His work in the field of African curios was seminal to the development of his art, which explores the idea of casting mythical realities on African value systems, involving found objects, multiple-headed animals, and peri-urban local landscapes drawn from photographs of his childhood holidays....
French photographer, video artist, and installation artist of Algerian descent, active in the UK. Born in Paris in 1963, Zineb Sedira relocated to England in 1986. In 1995 she earned a BA in critical fine art practice with a focus on post-colonial studies at Central Saint Martins School of Art. She finished an MFA in Media at the Slade School of Art in ...
Senegalese novelist and film maker. The son of a fisherman, Sembène was born in the Casamance region of southern Senegal and completed his formal education at the age of 14. Through the 1940s and 1950s he was variously a soldier in World War II, a railway worker in Senegal, and a stevedore and trade-union organizer at Marseilles. Sembène started his artistic career as a writer while in Marseilles as his interest in Marxist and Pan-Africanist philosophies intensified. He was nearly 40 years of age when he decided to take up film-making and spent a year learning cinematography at the Gorki Studios in Moscow, under the direction of Soviet director Marc Donskoy (...