The Focus of this year’s FNB JoburgArtFair is set to highlight a transformational moment in East Africa’s art scene. Presented together in one location, the Focus spans the greater horn of Africa and great lakes regions from Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda to Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan.
First is the solo presentation by 2016 Featured Artist, Wangechi Mutu (Kenya / USA) presented by Keyes Art Mile, Johannesburg. Born in Nairobi, Kenya, educated in Britain and America and resident in New York since the mid-nineties, Mutu’s practice has achieved global acclaim. Visitors to the fair will also have the opportunity of seeing a new site-specific sculptural installation by Serge Alain Nitegeka (Burundi) presented by Stevenson, alongside new, large-scale works by Sanaa Gateja (Uganda) presented by Afriart.
“As the premium art event on the African continent, the FNB JoburgArtFair aims to lead not only South African audiences but the world’s appreciation of cutting edge African art.” FNB JoburgArtFair Director, Mandla Sibeko.
FNB JoburgArtFair Curator, Lucy MacGarry explains that, “East Africa is a vast geographical area with varied and often disparate social and creative perspectives and sensibilities. This year’s curatorial intervention will give audiences a first step towards engaging in artistic developments and narratives arising from the region. Presenting both emerging and world-acclaimed artists, galleries and non-profit organisations our intention is to provide a catalyst for on-going research, transnational dialogue and future projects of significance. ”
Further solo presentations by leading artists include Aida Muluneh (Ethiopia) presented by David Krut Projects, The Nest Collective (Kenya) presented by the Goethe-Institut Johannesburg, Jim Chuchu (Kenya) presented by Mariane Ibrahim and a video installation by Ato Malinda Jackie Karuti (both Kenya) and Rehema Chachage (Tanzania) presented by Circle Art Agency.
Futhermore, an invitational section will feature a selection of leading art spaces from Kampala, Addis Ababa, Bujumbura, through Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. These galleries and non-profit platforms include:
Addis Fine Art (Addis Ababa) representing Ethiopian artists Michael Tsegaye, Leikun Nahusenay, Merikokeb Berhanu and Wosene Kosrof.
Addis Foto Fest (Addis Ababa) – established and directed by Aida Muluneh – representing Aron Simeneh (Ethiopia), Tahir Karmali (Kenya), Sarah Waiswa (Uganda), Mustafa Saeed (Somali Land) and Ala Kheir (Sudan).
Afriart Gallery (Kampala) representing Ugandan artists Eria ‘Sane’ Nsubuga and Xenson.
Circle Art Agency (Nairobi) representing Paul Ndema (Uganda) and Dennis Muraguri (Kenya).
Kampala Art Auction (Kampala) representing Peter Genza (Uganda), Sheila Nakitende (Uganda), Longinos Nagila (Kenya), Ange Sita Swana (Rwanda) and John Mary Mukiza (Uganda).
Kampala Arts Trust (Kampala) representing Ugandan artists Joseph Ntensibe, John Mary Mukiza and Henry ‘Mzili’ Mujunga.
Kuona Trust Art Centre representing Kenyan artists Gor Soudan, Peterson Kamwathi, Paul Onditi, Osborne Macharia, Michael Soi, Naomi Wanjiku, Tahir Karmali, Beatrice Njoroge and Martin Onyis.