Arts, Culture and Sport
Pride Month: Contemporary artists exploring Queer Africa
Artists move the dial when exploring the nuances of humanity. Their work helps us change perspective and have emotive dialogue about difficult themes. Here are some African visual artists using their mediums to reimagine sexuality, gender expression and identities.
Kawira Mwirichia (Post-humous mention)
Was a Kenyan queer visual artist who creates beautiful art that inspires and educates. She is best known for the kanga series titled “To Revolutionary Type Love.” The Kangas tell stories of the queer movement in Africa with some featuring the faces of David Kato Uganda’s fallen LGBTQ activist (murdered in 2011) and Kasha Jacqueline Nabagesera, a pioneer of Uganda’s LGBTQ movement.
Image print translation, “Yes I’m queer, why does it irk and irritate you so?”
Is a Nigerian queer digital artist passionate about creating pieces that reflect her intersectional African identity.
Is a South African artist who uses photography and video to explore themselves in self-portraiture Their art focuses on gender, race, and sexuality.
Is a South African photographer whose work lives in the spheres of fashion and music. He mixes traditionalism and Afrofuturism to document queer musicians and artists.
Giancarlo Calaméo Laguerta
Is a photographer based in Gaborone, Botswana. His images are bold, cinematic and tilt towards the dramatic.
Toyin Ojih Odutola
Is an American-Nigerian visual artist based in New York. She is best known for her detailed, multimedia drawings often presented in eclectic, large scale series, or “chapters,” using pen ink, pencil, charcoal and pastel on paper, board, and linen. Her textural portraits of Black life bring the viewer into mundane moments that contextualise and normalise her subjects.
Is a photographer, stylist and art director based in Lagos, Nigeria. He blurs the binary lines of gender and masculinity to explore a broader perceptive of what African men can be.
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Is a South African queer expressionist who also roots her work in Afrofuturism but from a feminist lens. In her art and expression, she aims to honour her lineage by disputing oppression and bringing the focus to the reimagination of Blackness.
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