Call for Contributions for the 3rd edition of SAVVY | art.contemporary.african.:
Art and politics – An inseparable couple?
The fire behind the smoke called political art
Call for Papers Date:
One of those pertinacious claims about Contemporary African Art is that many artists of African origin navigate in and around the political, i.e. do political art. This claim is based on the idea that due to the socio-political context of political uprisings, droughts, diseases etc. within which the continent finds itself, artists cannot do art beyond the political, and are bound to interpret or comment on such issues. Or as a matter of fact critics are swift to limit their analyses of artists' works on such political issues. Briefly, the underlying claimed hypothesis is that somebody who was socialised to think and live politically can never do anything without an implicit political statement.
The claim of the politicalness of Contemporary African Art has not been limited to artists but also extends to curators, writers and theorists. The ever-returning terminology of the Pre-, Post- and Neo- Colonial within African art, mirrors the frame(s) entered.
As the saying goes, there is no smoke without fire. Thus, the third edition of SAVVY | art.contemporary.african. questions the relation between art and politics. What do key players think?
Is the claim of political art in Contemporary African Art just a cliché? What can be understood anno 2011 to be political art? What ideological contexts and zeitgeist have to be fulfilled to categorize a piece of art or an artist as political? Is political art synonymous to propaganda, oppositionality or does every artistic articulation have a political effect, be it willingly or unwillingly? Can the semantic fields of art and politics be distinguished per se? Who are the artists of African origin that can be termed political and who are the artists that escape these “boxes of categorisation”? What are the focal points of biennials and other curated shows within the field of Contemporary African Art?
This edition of SAVVY | art.contemporary.african. will not only deal with the politics IN Contemporary African Art but also grant room for debate around the politics OF Contemporary African Art. I.e. it is worthwhile investigating the who, why, how and for who related to the politics of hosting and distribution of art exhibitions or grants and the politics behind the institutional positioning of Contemporary African Art.
You are invited to contribute essays, artist- or curator-portfolios, interviews with art professionals as well as reviews or previews of some of the numerous exhibitions with African artists / curators on board.
Essays should be submitted in English and German (only in English for non-German authors) and should not be more than 3500 words. All other articles should be in the range of 1500 words. Please submit high resolution images (300 dpi; 3MB) and the photo publication rights and photo credits. Authors must submit a short biography of not more than 60 words.
Submission at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline: 01. October 2011
Dr. Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung | Editor-in-Chief and Initiator
SAVVY | art.contemporary.african. | Richardstr. 43/44 | 12055 Berlin
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