Up to the present day, the Congo serves as a screen for the projection of Western as well as African ideas and fictions. The Democratic Republic of the Congo is famous for its vibrant art scene. Nowhere else in Africa is artistic creativity so diverse, inventive, and at the pulse of time. Still, in the past, too, people in the Congo brought forth impressive masks, figures, and designer pieces, many of which today rank as icons of African art. For the first time, the exhibition presents objects and photographs brought back from the Congo in 1938/39 by the art ethnologist Hans Himmelheber: colourful masks, powerful figures and artfully designed everyday objects. This contrasts with contemporary positions of renowned Congolese artists.
TEFAF Maastricht is widely regarded as the world's premier fair for art, antiques and design. Featuring 275 prestigious dealers from some 20 countries, TEFAF Maastricht is a showcase for the finest art works currently on the market. Alongside the traditional areas of Old Master paintings, antiques and classical antiquities that cover approximately half of the fair, you can also find modern and contemporary art, photographs, jewelry, 20th century design and works on paper.
Since the inauguration of the dedicated sales of Modern and Contemporary African Art in 2017, Sotheby’s sales in the category have achieved over sixty world records, championing the work of artists from across the African diaspora and underscoring the rising global interest. As market leaders in the field, Sotheby’s sales of Modern and Contemporary African Art champion the work of artists from across the African continent, and our upcoming auction includes a specially curated collection of paintings, photographs, drawings and sculpture from the 20th and 21st centuries.
Very few places in the world have such a strong connection to iron as Sub-Saharan Africa. For over two millennia, the forging of one of the planet’s most fundamental materials has revolutionised the continent and profoundly shaped its communities and cultures, from fields to homes and from battlefields to religious sites. Under the hammer of African blacksmiths, masters of fire and virtuosos of transformation, the metal is cast, forged, beaten then metamorphosed into tools, or in some cases vested with social and spiritual power, always with incredible artistic sensitivity. "Striking Iron. The Art of African Blacksmiths" presents the vast diversity of forms and traditions surrounding iron in different regions of Sub-Saharan Africa. 230 pieces produced between the 17th century and the modern-day, ranging from wood sculptures to currencies in a myriad of shapes and sizes, diverse musical instruments, weapons and prestigious objects, all attesting to the talent and technical sophistication of African blacksmiths, figures that are equally venerated and feared.
PAD, pioneering event for Art and Design aficionados and collectors, has been reinventing for the past 20 years the Cabinet d’Amateur and the notion of eclecticism, anticipating the aesthetic aspirations of its time. Season after season, it offers an intimate cocoon to those who have made decorative arts and design the core of their collection, driven by passion and heritage. Every edition evolves in aim to create an unprecedented dialogue between modern art, historical and contemporary design and jewellery. This year will give greater room to Primitive Art, and will highlight the vitality of raising such perspectives. The engaging aspect of PAD is its invitation to enter a personal collection, conceived by a selection of local and international art dealers – all of whom are leaders in their fields, eager to address each passionate collector in a unique manner. In this salon, mind is enlivened and imagination is exhilarated, as entering a place where the contemporary taste for 20th and 21st Century decorative art is born.
The FotoFest Biennial 2020 marks the first time in its 37-year history that the Biennial’s central exhibition will focus on artists of African origin. African Cosmologies will feature over 30 artists from across the continent and its diaspora, making it one of the world’s largest exhibitions of African photography.