“Bamako Encounters”

Marie-Ann Yemsi: “Our future is African”

The curator of the upcoming Bamako Photography Encounters retraces her passion for contemporary African art and the belated discovery of the wealth of this creative continent. Following studies that led her to managerial positions for international groups, Marie-Ann Yemsi made a sea change in 2005 when she set up Agent Créatif(s), an agency that would allow her to combine her appetite for contemporary art and her thirst for entrepreneurship. Her German and Cameroonian origins led her from voyage to voyage, from adventure to adventure. Not merely limiting herself to the task of supervising the African focus of Art Paris Art Fair, she is also curating the exhibition “Le jour qui vient” at the Galerie des Galeries. In December, the public can also discover her selection of video artists and photographers at the 11th Bamako Photography Encounters. Marie-Ann Yemsi explains to us why this is now finally the time of contemporary African art, and why it’s long overdue! When does your passion for contemporary art date back to? My early childhood. My parents always took me to museums. We also travelled a great deal, to several continents, which probably helped me to forget a certain openness to looking at things… After I spent a first part of my career in the luxury and communication sectors, I wanted to find an activity which would let me to live out my passion. This is how I set up Agent Créatif(s), a structure at the crossways between a consultancy firm and a project-support agency, specialised in contemporary African art and artistic production. Tell us about how you met Guillaume Piens and the organisers of Art Paris. I met him at my “Odyssées africaines” exhibition at the Brass in Brussels, presenting 16 Southeast African artists. These were key pieces by a young generation that...

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Mónica de Miranda represented by Sabrina Amrani Gallery in Madrid

The Sabrina Amrani Gallery in Madrid from now on will be representing Portuguese artist and researcher of Angolan origin, Mónica de Miranda. The artist is a graduate of the Camberwell College of Arts and the Institute of Education in London, and also has a PhD from the University of Middlesex. She set up the artist residency project Triangle Network in Portugal, as well as the Hangar Centre for Artistic Research, in Lisbon. In 2016, she won the Novo Banco Photo Prize and exhibited her work at the Museu Coleção Berardo in Lisbon. She has also been nominated for the Prix Pictet. The artist has participated in group exhibitions such as “Contemporary African Art and Aesthetics of Translations” at the Dakar Biennal (Senegal, 2016), “Telling Time” at the Bamako Encounters, Biennale of African Photography (Mali, 2015), “Ilha de São Jorge” at the 14th Venice Architecture Biennal in 2014, and “Do you hear me” at the Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (Portugal, 2008). She will be taking part in 1:54 in London during the Frieze...

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Bamako Encounters reinstated

After two years of interruption due to events in Mali, the Bamako Encounters have announced the programme for their tenth edition, which are to take place from 31 October to 31 December 2015. The theme of the African photography biennial is “Telling Time”: it is for the artists to ask questions regarding the notion of time and the manner in which they realise it. 39 artists have been selected this year: 26 photographers and 13 artists working with video. The promoters of the event have praised the number of received applications (800 whereas the previous year collected 250), revealing the abundance of African photography. The chosen artists will be the subject of an exhibition at the National Museum of Mali, where tribute shall also be given to photographers Bakary Diallo and Thabiso Sekgala. Coco Fusco will be the guest artist at the event. The district Museum and the Modibo Keïta Memorial will organise monographic exhibitions dedicated to J.D. Okhai Ojeikere, William Kentridge, Ayrson Heraclito and Hrair Sarkissian as well as thematic exhibitions such as “Portrait de Dorian”, by Yves Chatap. The French Institute proposes a show around Nigerian photographer Philippe Koudjina: Different events will be organised within the city, such as “1384 Days Wide”, a collaborative project which features photographs taken chronologically from 16 January to 30 October 2012. Created in 1994, the Bamako Encounters have progressively become a central event in Malian and African photography. According to Anne Tallineau, Delegated Director General of the French Institute, “Africa is a grand continent of art and culture; the Bamako Encounters, thanks to their pan-African dimension, show how contemporary creation is dynamic, inventive and appealing, from the North to the South and the East to the...

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