Arts & Culture

Say My Name African Art Exhibition

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African Art

Signature African Art presents Say My Name, two exhibitions of works curated by Khalil Akar and presented by acclaimed filmmaker Ava DuVernay in London from 27 October 2020 and in Los Angeles in February 2021.

Featuring portrait paintings and sculpture, Say My Name aims to connect African artists with the histories of the Diaspora in Europe and America. The exhibition in London features 13 African artists and honours the names of Black lives which have been lost at the hands of the police, including George Floyd.

Say My Name pays tribute to Black activists who have fought for equality such as Angela Davis, whose portrait is rendered by Dennis Osakue, known for his large-scale paintings that bear a photographic quality. Wangari Maathai, Kenyan activist and the first African woman to win the Nobel Prize, is depicted by contemporary artist Taiye Erewele.
Works in the London show also reflect on historical moments in Black history, ranging from the Transatlantic trade of enslaved Africans to the Windrush scandal. Johannesburg-based Giggs Kgole comments on the loss of identity of African people during enslavement in a 3D painting. Visual storyteller Dandelion Eghosa examines Bruce’s Beach, a resort seized from African Americans in the 1920s, by drawing parallels with a river in her hometown of Edo State in Nigeria.

Self-taught, Ouagadougou-based artist Adjaratou Ouedraogo explores the treatment of the descendants of the Windrush Generation in the 2018 Windrush scandal. Further works in the London exhibition include depictions of protests and police brutality alongside iconic symbols such as the Black Power fist.
Say My Name, presented by Ava DuVernay, at Signature African Art, London features works by: Adjaratou Ouedraogo Anthony Nsofor Ayanfe Olarinde Dandelion Eghosa Demola Ogunajo Dennis Osakue Djakou Nathalie
Ejiro Owigho Giggs Kgole Moufouli Bello Oluwole Omofemi Samson Akinnire Taiye Erewele

Signature African Art will donate 40% of the proceeds of Say My Name to Ava DuVernay’s Law Enforcement Accountability Project (LEAP). Dedicated to empowering activists to pursue narrative change, LEAP is a propulsive fund focused on telling stories of police abuse and violence through various narrative art forms. Administered by DuVernay’s non-profit ARRAY Alliance, the LEAP initiative commissions projects across multiple disciplines including film, literature, poetry, theatre, dance, fine art and music.
“Art is a disruptive and propulsive force. Creative expression is one of the most powerful tools that we can employ to activate and ignite change. I am happy to partner with Khalil and Signature African Art to showcase the galvanizing work of thirteen dynamic Black artists as they tackle issues of justice and dignity through their art practice,” – Ava DuVernay, Founder of ARRAY.


Written by: gapciud68

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