Ibe Ananaba Contemporary African Art And Fashion Illustration

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A rising name in contemporary African art and fashion illustration, Nigerian artist Ibe Ananaba opened his solo exhibition a few days ago at the Rele Gallery in Lagos, Nigeria. Entitled Sélénsé the exhibition is a body of contemporary works that tell the story of people’s way of expression through fashion. Ananaba took inspiration from the streets, taking the viewer on a visual exploration of everyday fashion. Looking at how fashion is worn, interpreted and flaunted. Fitting given that  the term Sélénsé is a local slang term meaning to ‘flaunt’ or to ‘show off’. Sélénsé captures the growing interest in African fashion.
[Main image credit: ‘I Beta Pass My Neighbour’ (1) – Ibe Ananaba]
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Andile Dyalvane South African Designer And Ceramicist New York Exhibition

Bird Vessel, 2015; Andile Dyalvane - Friedman Benda
Andile Dyalvane sees the unveiling of his first solo exhibition at Friedman Benda Gallery in New York this week. Opening on Thursday, 23rd June, the exhibition runs for two months, and will showcase over 20 unique pieces by the South African ceramicist. Andile is a leading figure whose work is helping to shape contemporary South African design.
[Main image credit: Bird Vessel, 2015; Andile Dyalvane – Friedman Benda]
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African Art: Malian Artist Abdoulaye Konate’s Textile Installations

Abdoulaye Konaté – Detail Couple H, 2014. Mixed media – wood, metal, fabric. 250 x 170 cm (98⅜ x 66⅞ in) Image Courtesy of the Artist and Blain|Southern Photographer: Christian Gläser, 2015 via widewalls
Abdoulaye Konaté is an award winning Malian artist who produces evocative textile installations that have captivated African art collectors. Inspired by colour, which he sees as a potent conveyor of meaning, Abdoulaye’s vividly hued textiles are created using sewing and appliqué techniques to create pieces that range from strips of fabric in graduating shades through to thought-provoking imagery.
 [Main image credit: Abdoulaye Konaté – Detail Couple H, 2014.
Mixed media – wood, metal, fabric. 250 x 170 cm (98⅜ x 66⅞ in)
Courtesy of the Artist and Blain|Southern Photographer: Christian Gläser, 2015 via widewalls]
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Imaginarium Awards Nurturing South Africa’s Emerging Creative Talent

The Imaginarium Awards, an ambitious modern art and design awards was launched by PPC Ltd with the aim of promoting and supporting South Africa’s emerging creative talent. The competition invited entries across six categories: film, industrial design, fashion, jewellery, architecture and sculpture. Winners of the inaugural event were announced in January 2015.
[Main image credit: PPC Imaginarium Awards]
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British / Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare Fine Dining Collection For Tate

[Image credit: Yinka Shonibare for Tate, Small Plate – Tate]
British/Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare MBE has designed an exclusive range of highly collectable fine bone china dinnerware for Tate, one the UK’s premier art institutions. The limited edition collection sees a distinctively patterned tea set and dinner plates inspired by, the Tate’s archives, research Yinka carries out at the institution, as well influences from his own work. The illustrations combine historical text and imagery, which is incorporated into several different collage patterns, based on the Yinka’s intricate collage drawings. The patterns are created using an array of media, including the Dutch Wax fabrics the British/Nigerian artist often incorporates into his work, Financial Times newspaper cuttings, and gold leaf, which is used to depict the layered and diverse histories found within the Tate archive.
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Ocean Sole Recycled Animal Sculptures From Flipflops

A summer staple rubber flip flops are more often than not cheap, cheerful and therefore readily disposable. In East Africa thousands of discarded flip flops are washed up onto the beaches, littering the beautiful coastline, and as a result have a detrimental effect on the local wildlife, eco systems and eventually people, as toxins from the harmful plastics make their way into water systems, and bits of plastic get eaten by sea creatures such as turtles. This promoted Ocean Sole to do something about it.
[Main image Credit: Ocean Sole Giraffe Sculptures – Danny Seo/Lonny]
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Inaugural 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair In London

One of the largest art fairs in the world, Frieze, officially starts to tomorrow bringing to London a host of prominent global collectors. Alongside the fair, which is held at Regent’s Park, a selection of the world’s leading galleries set up shop in the city, holding special shows in a bid to capture some of the Collectors’ attention. Making its debut at Frieze week, today sees the start of 1:54, the inaugural Contemporary African Art Fair, which is being held in the West Wing of the prestigious cultural institution, Somerset House. Visitors can view, and purchase contemporary African art from seventeen galleries, representing over seventy African artists, exhibiting emerging talent alongside established names, in addition to attending stimulating and thought-provoking film screenings, debates, keynote lectures and panel discussions. The full programme of events can be downloaded from the 1:54 website.
[Edson Chagas; Angola: Found not Taken, Luanda, 2009 – C-print on dibond, 120 x 80cm]
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Hand Decorated Cabinets Inspired By African Design Elements

I stumbled upon these amazingly decorated, hand-painted cabinets by Argentinean artist, Lucas Risé. Visually stimulating, the cabinets are a riot of colour, pattern and texture, with several of the designs drawing inspiration from elements of African design and culture; from basketry to motifs. ‘Somewhere in Africa’, brings together elements of the different countries and regions visited during Lucas’ travels across Africa; whilst ‘African Whimsical’ pays homage to the traditional neck ornaments worn by women in the Continent’s mid-western regions. The ‘Carrousel’ cabinet, in particular reminds me of the Yoruba beaded chairs I have featured previously. The design sees the application of 21,000 metal studs covering the entire surface, creating an engaging tactile object. In addition to decorating cabinets, Lucas brings his intricate style to textiles, and other forms of furniture, like tables.
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