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Theresa Leininger-Miller

Group of African American artists active in France in the 1920s and 1930s. Between the world wars Paris became a Mecca for a “lost generation” of Americans. Hundreds of artists, musicians, and writers from all over the world flocked to the French capital in search of a sense of community and freedom to be creative. For African Americans, the lure of Paris was enhanced by fear of and disgust with widespread racial discrimination experienced in the United States. They sought a more nurturing environment where their work would receive serious attention, as well as the chance to study many of the world’s greatest cultural achievements. France offered this along with an active black diasporal community with a growing sense of Pan-Africanism. Painters, sculptors, and printmakers thrived there, studying at the finest art academies, exhibiting at respected salons, winning awards, seeing choice art collections, mingling with people of diverse ethnic origins, dancing to jazz, and fervently discussing art, race, literature, philosophy, and politics. Although their individual experiences differed widely, they had much in common, including exposure to traditional European art, African art, modern art, and proto-Negritude ideas. As a result of their stay in Paris, all were affected artistically, socially, and politically in positive ways and most went on to have distinguished careers....

Article

South African, 20th century, male.

Born 1906, in Somerset East, Eastern Cape; died 1982, in Port Shepstone, Natal (KwaZulu-Natal).

Painter, watercolourist, draughtsman, printmaker, Collage, installations, performance art.

Walter Whall Battiss was raised in the Orange Free State (Free State), where he was introduced to rock art by William Fowler. He worked in the Rustenburg Magistrate’s Office (...

Article

Elaine O’Brien

German multi-media installation and performance artist of Kenyan birth. Von Bonin is known for collaborative, richly associative and perplexing spaces full of artworks that suggest Alice-in-Wonderland narratives and evoke Claes Oldenburg’s playful relational strategies.

Von Bonin attained art world prominence soon after her first New York solo show in ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 8 March 1911, in Paris.

Painter, illustrator. Landscapes with figures. Stage costumes and sets.

Chauffrey travelled in Spain, Italy, Greece, the USA and Morocco; he brought back personal studies from these countries. He exhibited regularly in Paris, at the Salon d'Automne, the Salon de Mai and the Salon des Tuileries. Chauffrey created the sets and costumes for ...

Article

South African, 20th–21st century, male.

Active in France.

Born 11 August 1962, in Johannesburg.

Printmaker, choreographer, performance artist. Identity politics.

Living Art.

Steven Cohen was the first South African artist under apartheid to create confrontational performance art engaging with sexual and cultural identity. He began his career in the 1980s, while conscripted into the South African army, when he went absent without leave and learnt how to screenprint at Cape Town’s Ruth Prowse School of Art....

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Active in the USA from 1967.

Born 1934, in Oran, Algeria; died 1983.

Draughtsman, mixed media, performance artist. Artists' books.

Conceptual Art.

In 1967, Guy de Cointet left for the USA, where he worked as an assistant to Larry Bell in New York, before moving to Los Angeles. His work and his philosophy, derived from Structuralism, are connected to word-making signs, in experiments in books evolving towards images. The inventor of a new language, Guy de Cointet's artistic books and graphic works are close to concrete poetry: ...

Article

Susan Kart

(b Nairobi, 1958). Kenyan photographer, multimedia and performance artist, and teacher of Indian descent, active in the USA. DeSouza was born in Kenya to Indian parents. Raised in London from the age of 7, he called his background that of a ‘double colonial history’. DeSouza attended Goldsmiths College in London and the Bath Academy of Art, and although he has worked primarily in photography and as a writer on contemporary art, he has also branched out into performance art, digital painting, and textual and mixed media arts. He moved to the USA in ...

Article

Egyptian, 20th century, male.

Born 1940, in Cairo.

Painter, watercolourist, illustrator, decorative artist. Decorative motifs. Stage costumes and sets, designs for jewellery.

A pupil at the Académie Julian, the École des Arts Decoratifs and the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Georges Doche went on to show his work in several public exhibitions and, in particular, at the Salon des Artistes Indépendants in Paris, as well as at several private galleries in Geneva, Tokyo and London. He had a number of solo exhibitions, including in Paris (...

Article

Carol Magee

Cameroonian photographer and dancer, active in the Netherlands. Essamba moved to Paris at the age of nine and later studied philosophy at the Lyceum. After marrying and moving to Amsterdam, she studied photography at the Fotovaschool. She first exhibited at the Gallerie Art Collective, Amsterdam (...

Article

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...

Article

Russell Gullette

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 ...

Article

Algerian, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in Belgium from 1979, naturalised in 1990.

Born 22 April 1952, in Kabylia (Bejaïa).

Painter, illustrator, musician. Local scenes.

Born in the Kabylia region in Algeria, Boubeker was also a storyteller and singer. He paints the everyday life of shepherds, camel herders, women going about their work in the home and garden, creating compositions full of narrative detail with a feel of childlike poetry. Hamsi began exhibiting his paintings in ...

Article

South African, 20th–21st century, male.

Born 1975, in Cape Town.

Sculptor, installation artist, performance artist, draughtsman.

Nicholas Hlobo, who lives in Johannesburg, graduated with a BTech: Fine Art degree at the Technikon Witwatersrand (now University of Johannesburg) in 2002. The sudden explosion in South African art (post ...

Article

Egyptian, 10th century, male.

Active at the end of the 10th century.

Painter. Local scenes.

Ibn El Azîz was a painter at the court of the Fatimids in Cairo. He was mainly in the service of Vizir Bazuri, for whom he painted among other works a ...

Article

Algerian, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active from 1958 in France.

Born 1953, in Decazeville.

Intervention artist, assemblage artist.

Khimoune settled in Paris in 1958, where he studied at the school of fine arts. A militant figure of the new generation, he was involved with the radical Radio-Beur. A solo exhibition of his work was staged at the K. foundry in Aubervilliers in ...

Article

British, 20th century, male.

Born 23 February 1921, in Zambesi River, near Victoria Falls, Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe); died 1 January 2006.

Painter, assemblage artist, environmental artist, performance artist.

Conceptual Art.

John Latham trained at Chelsea School of Art in London from 1946 to 1950. His aesthetic approach considers painting as an instantaneous experience, indissociable from our perception of the real world - hence his interest in the industrial landscape. His works incorporate real objects, notably books, as seen in his celebrated ...

Article

Kristine Stiles

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 ...

Article

French, 19th century, male.

Active also active in Algeria.

Born 5 July 1817, in Narbonne; died 24 October 1887, in Mustapha, Algeria.

Painter, writer, musician. Religious subjects, genre scenes, landscapes. Murals, designs for stained glass.

Orientalism.

Lazerges studied under François Bouchot and David d'Angers. He first visited Algeria in 1842 and moved there around 1861. He was the father of Jean Baptiste Paul Lazerges. Jean Raymond Hippolyte Lazerges exhibited at the Paris Salon from 1840 to 1887 with, among other works, ...

Article

Greek, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1924.

Born 1905, in Port Said, Egypt, to a French mother and a Greek father; died 1990, in Seine-Port, France.

Painter, draughtsman, engraver. Figures, figure compositions, still-lifes, portraits. Stage costumes and sets.

Mayo was educated in Alexandria but went to Paris in ...

Article

Algerian, 20th century, male.

Painter, performance artist.

Tarik Mesli studied at the school of fine arts in Algiers from 1985 to 1993. He took part in collective exhibitions, including the International Biennale, Algiers (1989); Galerie M, Oran (1992); and the Centre Culturel Algérien, Paris (...