Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Trend Watch: Lagos - Africa's Cultural Nerve Center?

The 21st century has seen Africa front and centre of age old discussions on culture, art and identity, culminating in a movement - some call it a Renaissance - that is beginning to define and re-define the continent's value beyond its borders. In other words, Africa isn't just safari central or AIDS republic -- Africans and non-Africans worldwide are probing the length and breadth of Africa's unique contribution and sharing their findings and creations on some of the world's most recognized platforms. Yet, with exhibitions and shows traversing the nooks of London, New York and Vienna, Africa itself is beginning to host a small but encouraging number of them. 

Today, Fela!, the Broadway Show depicting the life and times of the late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, opens at the Expo Hall, Lagos [April 20-25] and promises to be a colorful and cultural affair. Art buffs and enthusiasts are set to converge at Terra Kulture this evening where the Centre for Contempoary Art (CCA) will host a conversation with renowned Nigerian-British artist Yinka Shonibare, MBE. May 14 sees the arrival of the Austrian Lace - Nigerian Fashion exhibition, celebrating Austria and Nigeria's textile and (invariably) cultural relationship. In one sense, Lagos is shaping up to be one of Africa's most formidable cultural nerve centres, and these trends must be nurtured and fostered in across the continent or we stand the risk of appreciating Africa more outside its shores than inside -- a tragedy, if you ask us.

For further information on each event:

- SLiq

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