This exhibition gathers 34 artists active today that deal with forms of traditional African art in their works. One of the main focal points of curator Philippe Dagen is the question of how these established forms can be charged with contemporary social and political layers of meaning and what these references tell viewers in today’s globalized world and visual habits.
“What does contemporary art owe to ancient African arts? (…) What new life has it given them?”- Philippe Dagen
Right at the beginning of the exhibition tour, A.R. Penck’s paintings remind the “Primitivism“ of the Avantgardes, entering in a dialogue with works by Jean-Michel Basquiat and Chéri Samba. In a different section, works by Bertrand Lavier address the status of African sculptures as luxury objects in a consumer society.
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Photo credits: Exhibition views of Ex Africa, Présences africaines dans l'art d'aujourd'hui, curated by Philippe Dagen, Musée du Quai Branly - Jacques Chirac, 2021 © Musée du Quai Branly - Jacques Chirac. Photo Léo Delafontaine. Video Credits: Ex Africa, Présences africaines dans l'art aujourd'hui, courtesy Musée du Quai Branly - Jacques Chirac.