On 6 March – independence day in Ghana – a group of more than 50 men and women, dressed in their mothers’ clothes, led a crowd of spectators from the street into the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City in Accra. The performance by Serge Attukwei Clottey marked the opening of Gallery 1957.
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A growing number of sub-Saharan African artists are realizing the importance and potency of technology — social media, apps, websites and online platforms focused on the promotion and archiving of African contemporary art. The Ghanaian artist Serge Attukwei Clottey said that thanks to the Internet, where he posts his artistic productions on his Instagram account, he not only was offered — and took — the chance to study in Brazil but he also was contacted by one of his future collectors, who is based in California. “I think technology helps African artists to reach many people in the global art space,” he said by email. “For example, I’ve been getting many residency opportunities from all over the world because people always see my work online.”
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Gallery 1957 Creative Director Nana Oforiatta Ayim gives an insider guide to all the hot spots in the vibrant Ghanaian capital of Accra. Read the article here.
To find out more about Gallery 1957 and the launch exhibition, BLOUIN ARTINFO got in touch with Zakhem and asked him a few questions. Read the interview here
Okayafrica spoke to Gallery 1957’s Creative Director, Nana Oforiatta Ayim, about her vision for the gallery and how she plans to use it to engage audiences and profile the work of local artists. Read the article here
A solo exhibition by Serge Attukwei Clottey of Ghana will inaugurate this new gallery, which is dedicated to displaying the country’s artists. The show’s title refers to a Ghanaian custom of locking up a relative’s clothing for a year after he or she dies, and the works on view — brightly hued textiles — were made after the death of the artist’s mother. Read the article here
Part of the creative direction of Gallery 1957 is to open up the notion of what art is, how it is experienced, and what can be animated by it. To that end, collaborations like the one with Asa Baako open it up beyond the limited confines of the white cube space. Asa Baako was founded in 2011 by Kofi Debrah, and lays great importance on social inclusion and equalisation, on bringing urban and local residents together; as well as on conservation and the natural environment.
Gallery 1957 will open with a performance by Ghanaian artist Serge Attukwei Clottey and his performance collective GoLokal. Clottey is the creator of Afrogallonism, an artistic concept commenting on consumption within modern Africa through the utilisation of yellow gallon containers. To attend, RSVP here.
Artist Ibrahim Mahama discusses his own work and provides insight into contemporary art practice in Ghana today, as well as looking at the role an older generation of Ghanaian artists have played in art history through their search for new modes of artistic expression. To attend, RSVP here.
It’s a cut above the city’s art galleries, pledging a real commitment to promotion, archiving and storage. “There are a handful of real collectors here,” says the gallery’s founder Marwan Zakhem, himself a collector with regional clout. “But they haven’t really been given the opportunity to collect [the work of] many Ghanaian artists before they’ve attained success internationally.” Read the article here.
Ghana is more than just the birthplace of El-Anatsui. Accra-based collector and construction business owner Marwan Zakhem is doing what he can to change international, and local, perceptions of his country by opening Gallery 1957, which will specialize in cutting-edge contemporary African art. Read the article here.
The gallery’s name, 1957, refers to the year in which Ghana gained independence. Zakhem hopes to bring to international attention the “wealth of talent in Ghana” and the “intense, politically driven works” being produced by the nation’s young artists. Read the article here.