Find out how why we’re putting African innovation in the spotlight, meet the artists and writers who are marking 20 years of the African Union and find out what our Narrative Champions have been up to.
What’s Happening at Africa No Filter
1. We’re shifting narratives about innovation in Africa: African innovation is increasingly beginning to yield more innovative contributions around the world, yet the image of Africa as an innovator is overshadowed by the persistent, harmful stereotypes of a ‘backward’ ‘poverty stricken’ continent that is largely a recipient of Global North innovations. Our latest report, Africa – innovator or imitator? Exploring narratives around Africa’s technological capabilities, unpacks the extent to which Africans believe in local innovations and if they are influenced by the dominance of narratives that promote the Global North as
superior innovators.Read more.
2. We kicked off two residencies for writers and visual artists: The writers and visual artists who have been selected to take part in celebrations marking 20 years of the African Union have started their residencies, where they are producing art and short stories inspired by the theme of “Our Africa, Our Future". The writers — Nour Kamel, Sukoluhle Nyathi, TJ Benson and
Musih Tedji Xaviere — are hosted by the Library of Africa and the African Diaspora (LOATAD) in Accra, Ghana. Visual artists — Eza Komla, Ronald Odur, Natnael Ashebir, Lerato Motaung and Senami Donoumassou — are hosted by Loman Art House in Dakar, Senegal. Read more.
3. We’re empowering creatives with tools to keep earning from their art: Why are copyrights and licensing important for creatives and
how can you protect your intellectual property so that you keep earning from your art long after it has been produced? Join Intellectual Property, Media and Entertainment Law, and Debt Finance expert, Georgette Monnou at the next ANF Academy fireside chat to find out. Date: Friday, 2 December. Time: 5pm WAT | 6 pm SAST | 7 pm EAT.Register here.
Keeping up with ANF Narrative Champions
1. Creativity and art are powerful tools in creating and presenting relevant narratives about the African continent, and ANF Emerging Artists Fellows spent the year working on career-defining projects that celebrate innovation, creativity, heritage, women leaders, African cuisine and the continent’s rich history.Check out this online exhibition to see what they have produced.
2. Jollof rice gets Ghanaians and Nigerians competing about which nation makes the best version of the dish while its Senegalese version, thieboudienne, made the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. On 4 November, the world-famous dish was turned into a Google Doodle by ANF Emerging Artists fellow Haneefah Adam.
The rarely seen side of Kinshasa took centre stage at Laboratoire Kontempo’s Kinzonzi 2.0. The three-day showcase featured digital artworks by six Congolese artists, along with artistic videos, artist talks, radio shows for exchanges on local perspectives of Kinshasa and international artistic trends. Topics included stereotypes in the representation and perception of the Congolese art scene, post-colonial realities and their power dynamics. Live screenings of the showcase were attended by 135 people and reached 122 people online.
4. A picture is worth a thousand words, and Everyday Projects is ensuring that images of Africa go beyond
stereotypes to show a dynamic continent by empowering photographers through The Essentials, a series of online workshops that offers tools and resources to tell alternative and nuanced visual stories of Africa. Season 2 of The Essentials was delivered by prolific photographers including Sarah Waiswa, Tara Pixley, and Yagazie Emezi. It was attended by 650 emerging and experienced editorial photographers from 21 African countries.
- documenting the narrative progress we’re seeing
Nigeria’s Benin Bronzes have a new digital home, calledDigital Benin. It’s an archive with images and descriptions of more than 5000 artefacts held in 131 institutions around the world. Considered some of the most important art in the world, the Benin Bronzes were produced in the 16th to 18th century in the Kingdom of Benin (modern-day Nigeria) and looted during the British Colonial rule.
Afrobeats is fast becoming the hottest music genre in the world, and its artists keep making historic strides that serve as a case in point. The latest stride for the genre is its inaugural addition to the American Music Awards in the Favourite Afrobeats category, which was won by WIZKID. Tems also got an award for the Best R&B Song with Essence.
Salima Mukansanga made history as the first African woman referee to officiate a match at the FIFA World Cup. The 34-year-old Rwandese officiated the France VS Australia game in Qatar. It’s been a good year for Mukansanga, who became the first woman to referee at the Africa Cup of Nations tournament that was held in January 2022.
That’s it. Remember to follow us on social media at @Africanofilter.
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