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The Biennial of Contemporary African Art 2004
Samta Benyahia Je suis femme Photo and sound installation

The Biennial of Contemporary African Art 2004

Doug Aitken » Asmae Lahkim Bennani » Samta Benyahia » Zoulikha Bouabdellah » Fatma Charfi » Mario Cravo Neto » Trisha Donnelly » Hala Elkoussy » YANG Fudong » Pélagie Gbaguidi » Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster » Stefan Höller » Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla » Isaac Julien » Amal & Abd El Ghany Kenawy » Achillekà Komguem » Maha Maamoun » Michèle Magema » Moataz M. Nasr » Zaynab Toyosi Odunsi » Philippe Parreno » Anri Sala » Fatou Kandé Senghor » Rirkrit Tiravanija » Anton Vidokle » & others

Exhibition: – 7 Jun 2004

The Biennial of Contemporary African Art

19, avenue Albert Sarraut B.P 3845
18524 Dakar

+221-8230918


www.dakart.org

The International Exposition of the 2004 Dak’Art Biennial of Contemporary African Art will be a dynamic, truly contemporary and pan-African exhibition. This experience will showcase thirty three artists and five designers from sixteen countries, exhibiting ninety-four works. The International Exposition includes a wide range of expressive strategies, from painting, to installation, to performance art, to sculpture, to video art and interactive media. While its scope transverses generations, a significant number of the artists are from younger generations. Fifteen artists are women and eighteen are men. The International Selection Committee was made up of a majority of African curators and critics, with the addition of individuals from Canada, France and Austria. We set criteria that we refined throughout the seven-day selection and two-day exhibition planning process. Did the artist’s creative vision ring out through the work? Was it fresh? Was the work resonant with a sense of place, with the local and specific? Were the formal and conceptual strategies those of contemporary Africa? Could the art speak to a pan-African audience? Would international audiences engage with the artists’ works? In choosing the artists, the International Selection Committee considered almost three hundred and fifty files from individual artists, each containing five art works. We paid keen attention to democratic process, careful debate and review. In all, we considered the submissions six times, first to choose the artists and then to choose the works for the exhibition. We then spent time in the exhibition space, considered its installation, met with the exhibition organizers and discussed concerns that seemed to glow, at first review, through the art. The International Exposition of Dak’Art 2004 is alight with intellectual, emotional and spiritual reflections of contemporary African experience. Gender, and the ways that its complexities structure the body, urban experience, pleasure, public space, fashion, violence, colonial legacies, rites of passage, ritual and spirituality, fires significant numbers of works. African urbanism-its challenges and pleasures, winds through the art of many countries. The overwhelming impacts of globalization, displacement and the social, cultural and economic imagery that accompanies these forces were met by artists’ interventions, direct voice or irony. Spiritual process and religious imagery link past, present and future. Formal play with time and space, depth and simultaneity, symmetry, perspective, visual language systems and re-enactment provide vital and lived engagement with aesthetics. The art chosen traverses boundaries and shares categories, making for an evocative, sensual and eloquent exhibition. I believe that I may speak for all members in thanking the Dak’Art, Biennial of Contemporary African Art for the honour of participating on the selection committee. Sara Diamond President of the International Selection Committee. December 21, 2003

The Biennial of Contemporary African Art 2004
Maha Maamoun Cairo scapes - untitled # 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 2001/2003 Ink Jet Print on vinyl stretched on wooden frame 300 x 50 cm
The Biennial of Contemporary African Art 2004
Asmae Lahkim Bennani Seuil 2002 Silk screen ink and digital photo 100 x 80 cm
The Biennial of Contemporary African Art 2004
Achillekà Komguem Sentier ridé 2002 Video 2