Showing posts from June, 2016

Africa Writes 2016 returns

Africa Writes 2016 returns!

Check out highlights from last year's event here.

Digital dimensions: Ghanaian illustrators test boundaries in contemporary art

Ghanaian artists can face an uphill struggle attaining national recognition for their work. Although there is a visual appreciation of the craft, often art in Ghana is viewed as indulgent, expensive and not an acceptable career choice. As a result, some artists leave the country in order to further their careers, while others opt to find more stable job alternatives. But there is a new wave of Ghanaian talent that is helping to popularise and change attitudes to art in Ghana - all from the comfort of their homes.

Ghanaian digital illustrator heavyweights such as Ray Styles and Bright Ackwerh, are combining drawing skills, digital techniques and social media to target audiences with global influence, money and a love of art. This relatively recent trend has helped popularise celebrity caricatures that use satirical pieces to highlight social and political commentary.
Digital illustration has been around in Ghana for at least a decade.

But developments in graphic design tablets such as J…

Picture perfect? Britain's Black trailblazers

This arresting image of South African chorister Eleanor Xiniwe, who toured Britain as part of the African Choir between 1891 and 1893, lay forgotten for over 100 years.

Autograph ABP - a charity established to promote Black photographers - unearthed it and first exhibited it in Rivington Place, London in 2014. 

The image is one of over 40, which depict celebrated and forgotten African and Asian figures and is on display at London's National Portrait Gallery until 11 December 2016.
Named 'Black Chronicles - Photographic Portraits 1862-1948', the exhibition is small, and the images annoyingly scattered across three gallery spaces. 

Nevertheless, the showcase is well worth a visit. In my view, it celebrates the achievements of some pioneering men, women and children who were trailblazers in politics, the arts, music and sport before Black and Asian people settled in Britain in large numbers.
Xiniwe was part of this trailblazing party. She was part of a 14-strong choir that includ…