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Joburg Art Fair 2016 – a Great success

Joburg Art Fair 2016

Wow, what a show. The Joburg Art Fair this year took African Art to the next level. There was so much excitement leading up to the events, and they did not dissapoint. With Mandla Sibeko at the helm, as Director, the fair was filled to capacity with a well curated programme. It is no surprise that this was the most successful fair to date with Art Sales almost double that of last year. One of the prominent galleries shared with me that one of their works sold for a hefty price at the Pre-opening sales for Private Collectors earlier on opening night.

This is of course great news for those of us who want to see the Art world thrive.

Firm favourites like Nicholas Hlobo, Mohau Modisakeng, Athi Patra Ruga and Zanele Muholi had strong showing and it was refreshing to see Ayanda Mabulu’s works sans the penis-politics controversies.. There were also new exciting Art from the likes of Neo Matloga (read his interview in next post) and that’s a great indication of the growth and expansion of the industry.

Nicholas Hlobo

Nicholas Hlobo

Ayanda Mabulu

Ayanda Mabulu


VIP Opening Night:

The VIP opening night was a great evening to catch up with the Industry and this proceeded on later to the VIP dinner at Marble, the newly opened restaurant at Keyes Art Miles. And the evening ended at Mesh, the private club at the same venue.

Champagne and wine flowed, and thus began an exciting few days of Art, Art talks, Art buying. And most importantly the celebration of the African narrative through Art.

A focus on East Africa:

Wangechi Mutu:

There’s no denying the force that  is East African Art at the moment, with Artists like Wangachi leading the way in infusing contemporary Art with Afrofuturism inspired works. Her video installation; The end of eating everything, is haunting, beautiful, mythological filled with imaginary beings as showcased in the incredible installation.

wangechi mutu



Aida Muluneh – Addis Ababa

This work is bold and present and very strong. It was used by the Art Fair to promote the events, and could be see all over Joburg and in media.

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The Nest collective – Nairobi

They call themselves an army of thinkers, makers and believers…their video installation called you to pause sit down and take it all in. The collective showed shorts from the film and discuss how Black Fantasia collects several future, past and imaginary narratives about blackness.

They Sent You is an anthology of short photo-comic vignettes set in an imaginary future Nairobi.

When we are / When we are not video instillations:
When we are not presents the dilemma of four unsettled sojourner seeking a freedom beyond the frame
When we are considers the question – to be deemed unthreatening how still must a black body be?


Circle Art Gallery – Nairobi

Presented works in Joburg Art Fair 2016  by Paul Ndema, Jackie Karuti, Ato Malinda, Rehema Chachage and Dennis Muraguri in two booths.

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Well done to the team at Art Logic and their long standing partner FNB for this well deserved success. It was also exciting to see new sponsors Pernod Ricard’s Prestige Brand, Perrier Jouet, Egon  Zehnder and Keyes Art Mile adding great value to the programme.

We cant wait to see what 2017 has to offer.