Featured

The Progress of Love: Diasporic Exhibit in Lagos, St. Louis & Houston

The Progress of Love is an African art exhibit that explores the expression of love in African culture. African documentary by Zina Saro-Wiwa explores kissing.


The Progress of Love, a joint exhibition in Lagos, Houston, and St. Louis explores African culture through questions of intimacy and cultural performances of love in the African Diaspora. The different exhibitions, at the Center for Contemporary Art - Lagos, The Menil Collection - Houston, and The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts - St. Louis, examine the role of African culture, media, and economics in creating ideas and expectations that mediate the social performance of love in the digital era.  If love is universal, how is it differently manifested across contextual realities? How is love in Africa or among Africans understood and portrayed globally?

"How Do Africans Kiss?" voiced off camera is the first in an series of progressively intimate prompts given to subjects in Eaten By The Heart, a video piece by Zina Saro-Wiwa that views like a casting screen-test. The piece which considers the "mapping of emotional landscapes" and kissing in African culture is part of an exhibition of more than twenty artists to open at the Menil Collection in Houston, TX on 2 Dec 2012.

"I wonder how the impact of how we choreograph and culturally organize the performance of love impacts what we feel inside and who we become."

-Zina Saro-Wiwa

With exhibitions already open in Lagos and St. Louis, the Menil Collection opening completes an unusual geographic triad. Be sure to check the project site for more information on exhibitions and the exciting set of artists featured in the show.

Interview
Photo: Lex Ash (@thelexash). Courtesy of Simi.

Interview: Simi Is Taking Risks

Nigerian star Simi talks about the successes & risks of this year, her thoughts on the #EndSARS protests, and how her husband, Adekunle Gold, inspired Restless II.

Simi is restless. It has nothing to do with the year she has had, in fact, she reaffirmed her status as one of Nigeria's most successful musicians with a single music drop, "Duduke," which enjoyed widespread appeal as the nation went into lockdown earlier in the year.

The 32-year-old singer's restlessness is a reflection of the organised chaos that has defined her recording process this year as she combined the rigours of being an expectant mother with an examination of her place in the wider world. It, more accurately, reflects her re-negotiation of the parameters of her stardom.

"I've never really been a big fan of the spotlight," she whispers silently early in our Zoom conversation. "I know that it comes with the territory, but when I got my big break and more people started to recognise me, I realised that I had to edit myself, my life, and most of the things that I'd do or say because I wanted to be careful to keep a part of me for myself."

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

These Poignant #EndSARS Protest Photos Show the Heart of a United People

Documentary photographer Victor Adewale captures poignant moments in the continued #EndSARS protests in Nigeria which are calling for an end to police brutality.