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MTV EMA 'Best African Act' Nominations Round-Up

We round up the list of the MTV EMAs 'Best African Act' nominees, including Fuse ODG, Locnville, Wizkid, Mafikizolo, and P-Square.


MTV recently announced the nominees for the "Best African Act" category at the November 10th MTV European Music Awards (EMAs), held this year at Amsterdam's Ziggo Dome. After a four year absence the African Act award is back, and with a revamped format. The winner will be entered into a new category deemed the "Best Worldwide Act" along with the winners of the other respective regional categories. We took a look at what 2013 has had in store for this year's unsurprisingly pop-heavy list of nominees.

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Fuse ODG

The Londoner of Ghanaian descent made great leaps riding the Azonto wave with smash hits "Azonto" and "Antenna." The latter, aside from its 8 million views on youtube, also spawned a worldwide dance competition.

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Locnville

Cape Town's Chaplin twins first gained worldwide attention courtesy of FIFA 11 use of their "Sun in My Pocket" single. After a three year hiatus the SA electro-pop duo returned this year with the release of popular (emphasis on pop) singles "Closer" and "Yesterday," off the Faster Longer Mixtape.

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Wizkid

It's been a HUGE year for Nigerian popstar Wizkid, with highlights (among many) that include releasing a Wale-featuring hit single, a Femi Kuti collab, the launch of his own label, and most recently selling out an Amsterdam arena. A second year returnee to the category, Wizkid is the frontrunner for this year's honors.

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Mafikizolo

As we speak the word "Khona" is being heard at every corner of the continent, the upshot of what may arguably be the definitive song of 2013. A successful start for the SA trio in 1997 was followed by trying years that included the tragic loss of groupmate Tebogo Madingoane as well as a brief hiatus. Now a duo, Mafikizolo has capitalized on the mega success of their new brand of Kwaito with performances across the continent's capitals (including Harare, Lusaka, Maputo and Lagos) as well as nominations the likes of the MOBO’s, Channel O Awards, and now the EMA’s.

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P-Square

Nigerian music royalty P-Square seem to do no wrong (ever) in the eyes of their following. 2013 saw the twins release another hit with "Personally," along with the accompanying MJ-honoring video. Recently they embarked on a North American tour (aka a "3-hour 13-man band" spectacle). The Naija popmakers even received honorary Calgarian citizenship (and hats) courtesy of southern Alberta's largest city, an honor reserved for individuals from outside of Canada who have excelled in their respective field.

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Artwork: Barthélémy Toguo Lockdown Selfportrait 10, 2020. Courtesy Galerie Lelong & Co

1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair Goes to Paris in 2021

The longstanding celebration of African art will be hosted by Parisian hot spot Christie's for the first time ever.

In admittedly unideal circumstances, 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair will be touching French soil in 2021. The internationally celebrated art fair devoted to contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora will be hosted in Paris, France from January 20 - 23. With COVID-19 still having its way around the globe, finding new ways to connect is what it's all about and 1-54 is certainly taking the innovative steps to keep African art alive and well.
In partnership with Christie's, the in-person exhibits will take place at the auction house's city HQ at Avenue Matignon, while 20 international exhibitors will be featured online at Christies.com. And the fun doesn't stop there as the collaboration has brought in new ways to admire the talent from participating galleries from across Africa and Europe. The fair's multi-disciplinary program of talks, screenings, performances, workshops, and readings are set to excite and entice revelers.

Artwork: Delphine Desane Deep Sorrow, 2020. Courtesy Luce Gallery


The tech dependant program, curated by Le 18, a multi-disciplinary art space in Marrakech medina, will see events take place during the Parisian run fair, followed by more throughout February.
This year's 1-54 online will be accessible to global visitors virtually, following the success of the 2019's fair in New York City and London in 2020. In the wake of COVID-19 related regulations and public guidelines, 1-54 in collaboration with Christie's Paris is in compliance with all national regulations, strict sanitary measures, and security.

Artwork: Cristiano Mongovo Murmurantes Acrilico Sobre Tela 190x200cm 2019


1-54 founding director Touria El Glaoui commented, "Whilst we're sad not to be able to go ahead with the fourth edition of 1-54 Marrakech in February as hoped, we are incredibly excited to have the opportunity to be in Paris this January with our first-ever fair on French soil thanks to our dedicated partners Christie's. 1-54's vision has always been to promote vibrant and dynamic contemporary art from a diverse set of African perspectives and bring it to new audiences, and what better way of doing so than to launch an edition somewhere completely new. Thanks to the special Season of African Culture in France, 2021 is already set to be a great year for African art in the country so we are excited to be playing our part and look forward, all being well, to welcoming our French friends to Christie's and many more from around the world to our online fair in January."

Julien Pradels, General Director of Christie's France, said, "Christie's is delighted to announce our second collaboration with 1-54, the Contemporary African Art Fair, following a successful edition in London this October. Paris, with its strong links to the continent, is a perfect place for such a project and the additional context of the delayed Saison Africa 2020 makes this partnership all the more special. We hope this collaboration will prove a meaningful platform for the vibrant African art scene and we are confident that collectors will be as enthusiastic to see the works presented, as we are."


Artwork: Kwesi Botchway Metamorphose in July, 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery 1957


Here's a list of participating galleries to be on the lookout for:

Galleries

31 PROJECT (Paris, France)
50 Golborne (London, United Kingdom)
Dominique Fiat (Paris, France)
Galerie 127 (Marrakech, Morocco)
Galerie Anne de Villepoix (Paris, France)
Galerie Cécile Fakhoury (Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire/ Dakar, Senegal)
Galerie Eric Dupont (Paris, France)
Galerie Lelong & Co. (Paris, France / New York, USA)
Galerie Nathalie Obadia (Paris, France / Brussels, Belgium)
Galleria Continua (Beijing, China / Havana, Cuba / Les Moulins, France / San Gimignano, Italy / Rome, Italy)
Gallery 1957 (Accra, Ghana / London, United Kingdom)
Loft Art Gallery (Casablanca, Morocco)

Luce Gallery (Turin, Italy)
MAGNIN-A (Paris, France)
Nil Gallery (Paris, France)
POLARTICS (Lagos, Nigeria)
SEPTIEME Gallery (Paris, France)
This is Not a White Cube (Luanda, Angola) THK Gallery (Cape Town, South Africa) Wilde (Geneva, Switzerland)

For more info visit 1-54

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Listen to Sibusile Xaba‘s New Jazz Single 'Umdali'

Sibusile Xaba's single 'Umdali' featuring Naftali and Fakazile Nkosi comes ahead of Brownswood Recording's highly-anticipated contemporary jazz compilation album 'Indaba Is'.