Condition Report

Symposium on the situation of art institutions in Africa


A large number of new art projects, independent art centres and galleries have sprung up throughout Africa in recent years. What role do these play in establishing an independent art scene and in what ways can they influence the cultural, social and political developments in their respective countries?
In 2012, in cooperation with the Federal Cultural Foundation and the Goethe-Institut, the Raw Material Company – Center for Art, Knowledge and Society in Dakar (Senegal) had invited more than 50 experts – artists, curators, gallery owners and representatives from independent art centres and museums in Africa, Europe and Latin America – to a three-day symposium to address the most recent developments, opportunities and limits of contemporary art institutions in Africa. In addition to discussing case studies from African art institutions, the participants debated the interdependent relationship between African organizations and former colonial powers who now often serve as their financial backers. Various art institutional models from other regions of the world were presented, whose conditions and goals are comparable with those in Africa and which can serve as the basis for evaluating the potential of African organizations.

A trilingual publication documenting the symposium was published by Hatje Cantz in autumn 2013.

Keynote speaker: Abdellah Karroum (Appartement 22, Rabat)
Impulse speakers: Françoise Vergès (social studies scholar, Paris), Oumar Ndao (Director of Culture & Tourism, City of Dakar)

Additional speakers: Messekerem Assegued (Zoma Contemporary, Addis Abeba), Yto Barrada (Cinémathèque de Tanger, Tangier), Ruth Belinga (Art Bakery, Douala), Marcio Botner (A Gentil Carioca, Rio de Janeiro), Raphael Chikukwa (National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Harare), Marilyn Doula-Bell (Doual’Art, Douala), Oyinda Fakeye (Center of Contemporary Art Lagos, Lagos), Hama Goro (Centre Soleil Afrique, Bamako), Sunjung Kim (ArtSonje Center, Seoul), Marta Kuzma (Director OCA, Office of Contemporary Art, Oslo), Gabi Ngcobo (Center for Historical Re-enactments, Johannesburg), Jimmy Ogonga (Nairobi Arts Trust, Nairobi), Sarah Rifky (Townhouse Gallery, Cairo), Samuel Sidibé (Musée National du Mali, Bamako), Ousseynou Wade (Dakar Biennale, Dakar) and many others

A symposium by the Raw Material Company - Center for Art, Knowledge and Society, Dakar in cooperation with the Goethe-Institut and the Federal Cultural Foundation

For more information please visit Raw Material Company's website:

The Programme in Detail

You can download the extensive programme of the symposium here:

Condition Report Schedule (PDF) (external link, opens in a new window)


Raw Material Company – center for art, knowledge and society

4074 bis Sicap Amitié 2

BP 22710 Dakar, Senegal (external link, opens in a new window)