Synopses & Reviews
The twentieth century has been a period of major disruption for traditional institutions in Africa. But even as old forms of art patronage were being suppressed, new avenues of artistic expression opened up. Postcolonial art in Africa has built seamlessly upon already existing structures in which precolonial and colonial genres of African art were made. It is in this sense, and in the habits and attitudes of artists towards making art, rather than in any adherence to a particular style, medium, technique, or thematic range, that the art is recognizably "African." Sidney Littlefield Kasfir, Associate Professor of Art History at Emory University, has taught, curated, and carried out extensive field research in Nigeria, Uganda, and Kenya, and has made briefer research trips to nine other African countries. Her critical history examines the major themes and accomplishments in African art from the past fifty years, achieving an impressive balance between the critical reexamination of frequently discussed artists, groups, and workshops and the introduction of less publicized or more recent material.
An associate professor of art history from Emory University offers a critical history of African art, examining major themes and accomplishments of the past 50 years. 170 illustrations, 70 in color.
An examination of the major themes and accomplishments in African art since the middle of the 20th century. It seeks to achieve a balance between the critical re-examination of frequently-discussed artists, groups and workshops and the introduction of less-publicized or more recent material.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 214-217) and index.
About the Author
Sidney Littlefield Kasfir is Associate Professor of Art History at Emory University in Atlanta and Curator of African Art at Michael C. Carlos Museum, also at Emory University. She studied Physics before embarking on Fine Arts at Harvard University and then managed the Nommo Gallery in Uganda. She completed her PhD on African Art at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and went on to do postdoctoral research at the University of Oxford. Since 1981 she has divided her time between teaching and curating in the USA and fieldwork in Nigeria, Kenya, and Uganda. She was editor of the anthology West African Masks and Cultural Systems and is working on a study of the colonial and postcolonial transformation of Idoma and Samburu art. She has also written many articles and essays.
Table of Contents
New genres: inventing African popular culture -- Transforming the workshop -- Patrons and mediators -- Art and commodity -- The African artist: shifting identities in the postcolonial world -- The idea of a national culture: decolonizing African art -- Migration and displacement.