Editorial: Brendon & Suzette Bell-Roberts introduces RAPID RESPONSE

The last three issues of ART AFRICA – themed NOTIONS OF HOME, SUSPENDED REALITY and RAPID RESPONSE – were all compiled under the cloud of the global pandemic and will be remembered long after the effects of COVID-19 have passed, making this period in our global art dialogues all the more critical.

With this, we are excited to welcome Azu Nwagbogu, as Editor, to ART AFRICA magazine. Our collaboration with Azu, and his organisations the African Artists’ Foundation and LagosPhoto, is referenced in this publication. So begins the unfolding of our exciting partnerships and programming over the coming months.

LEFT TO RIGHT: Azu Nwagbogu, Guest Editor ART AFRICA, RAPID RESPONSE, Issue 20. Photograph courtesy of Kadara Enyeasi. Dr Clémentine Deliss, Co-Director LagosPhoto 2020. Photograph © David Galstyan. Manny Kanabe, Board Advisor and London Associate, ART AFRICA. Photograph courtesy Manny Kanabe.  LEFT TO RIGHT: Azu Nwagbogu, Guest Editor ART AFRICA, RAPID RESPONSE, Issue 20. Photograph courtesy of Kadara Enyeasi. Dr Clémentine Deliss, Co-Director LagosPhoto 2020. Photograph © David Galstyan. Manny Kanabe, Board Advisor and London Associate, ART AFRICA. Photograph courtesy Manny Kanabe.

ART AFRICA, together with our partners the African Artists’ Foundation, BRAND SOUTH AFRICA and Henley Business School, Africa, this week introduced the AFRICA SOUTH BIENNALE Foundation. As part of South Africa’s Heritage Month, we announced the launch of the Foundation’s OPEN FOR DIALOGUE programme. These dialogues will serve to assist in preparing for and researching in the planning phase of the AFRICA SOUTH BIENNALE and runs between the 29th of September 2020 to February 2021. Azu Nwagbogu also joins the AFRICA SOUTH BIENNALE Foundation in the capacity of Curatorial Advisor.

Also joining the ART AFRICA team is Mr Manny Kanabe, in the capacity of Board Advisor and as our London Associate. The addition of Azu and Manny will strengthen our global outreach, editorial approaches, and business and institutional partnerships. ART AFRICA’s very own rapid response to current conditions has seen us adopt an innovative design experience for our new Digital Edition in August 2020 – resulting in a remarkable spike in our global readership. What’s more, is that we have made these digital editions available for free to our global audiences!

In this issue, features include our collaboration with Azu Nwagbogu as evidenced in a thorough investigation of this year’s edition of the LagosPhoto Festival; ART AFRICA’s Manny Kanabe talks to Lotte Johnson, Associate Curator at the Barbican Centre about Toyin Ojih Odutola’s: ‘A Countervailing Theory’; Kimberley Finnerty, Assistant Curator at The Showroom in London reviews Peter Adjaye’s ‘Soundscape Ceremonies Within’ for Toyin Ojih Odutola: ‘A Countervailing Theory’ at The Barbican; Christa Dee explores ‘Contemporary Female Identities in the Global South’ at the Joburg Contemporary Art Foundation; and even more stories which you can explore in our contents.   

The digital edition is available for free during October and November, with new stories added every week. At the end of November, the magazine will be available in a print edition with our curated content beautifully designed in a limited edition of 500, and individually numbered and signed

Enjoy the issue.

– Suzette & Brendon Bell-Roberts