January 8, 2012 - RAW MATERIAL COMPANY - Condition Report at Raw Material Company
January 8, 2012

Condition Report at Raw Material Company

Condition Report 

Raw Material Company, center for art, knowledge and society
4074 bis Sicap Amitié 2
BP 22710 Dakar, Senegal
+221 33 864 0248

Tuesday–Saturday from 10am–8pm


Raw Material Company is pleased to announce Condition Report a 3-day international symposium on building art institutions in Africa organized in cooperation with the Goethe-Institut and the German Federal Cultural Foundation. The symposium takes place in Dakar, Senegal, from 18–20 January 2012.

Welcome & Orientation: Koyo Kouoh

For a comparative history of independent spaces for art
Abdellah Karroum
The art scene in Africa is growing mainly on impetus of independent initiatives. The project spaces which are resisting the strongest to populist, nationalist and speculative developments are those who work closest to the artists and in relation with the implications of their works—both in search of a vocabulary that links them to the society and on the platforms and networks whose capital is invested more in the content of the works than in their market value.

CHAPTER 1: Actors, Agents & Mainstream

Session I
Establishing art spaces and the challenges of the environment
Artist Amadou Kane Sy, will talk about the concept of the holistic art project Portes et Passages, set up in Mbodiène–90km south of Dakar. The project aims at working in rural areas and takes into consideration ecological and social issues.

Video and film based artist Fatou Kandé Senghor gives an account on establishing Waru Studio, a site for collaboratory work among video and film artists.

Marion Louisgrand, founder and chief curator at Kër Thiossane will address the programmatic orientation of the villa for art and multimedia.

Mauro Petroni provides a narrative retrospective of Céramiques Almadies, an international ceramic workshop and alternative exhibition and production space. He will also speak about his role as curatorial advisor to one of the major patrons of the arts in Senegal; the engeneering company Eiffage.

Artist and social activist Viyé Diba will frame the history or artistic engagement in Senegal and highlight the urgency for art professionals to address political issues.

Writer and Cultural producer Oumar Sall, contextualizes the Senegalese artistic climate and introduces the collaborative platform Adafest.

Session II
Elaborating an activist vocabulary for art and the society
Moataz Nasr explains why he believes that a trampoline is a potent weapon and how he anticipated the current Egyptian revolution by giving it a face and a name at DARB 1718.

Jimmy Ogonga was aked to discuss how the Center of Contemporary Art East Africa inspires young and emerging artists and catalyses the creative energy of Nairobi.

Gabi Ngcobo will tell why she reenacts history through contemporary art practices and methods at the Center for Historical Reenactments in Johannesburg.

Patrick Mudekereza presents the methods that he and co-activist Sammy Balodji use through their initiative, PICHA, to bring an artistic awareness among an audience that mainly believes in mining and making money in one of the richest region in the world, the Katanga.

Hama Goro tells the story of how Centre Soleil d’Afrique filled the gap of the lack of facilities for artists in Bamako.

Artist and curator Zen Marie gives us the clues of his subterranean strategies to teach art at Wits University and why he wants to be caught in traffic in Dakar where there is no Sub Station to be found.

Juan Gaitan brings into the discussion a global perspective of activism in art with an emphasis on initiatives in the Americas.

Session III
New commissioners and the rewards of endogenous approaches

The bicephalous directorship of Doual’Art, Didier Schaub and Marilyn Douala Bell, show us how they surgically transformed the face of Douala and managed to twist the arm of more than one public official.

Photographer Aida Muluneh draws the lines from an independent initiative – Addis Photo Fest–to a public position at Gebre Kristos Desta Museum of Modern Art.

Associate curator Oyinda Fakeye of Center for Contemporary Art Lagos says how new media and experimental visual art practices are shaking up the vibe in Lagos and beyond.

Sarah Rifky talks accross three organizations, and spans her thoughts and analysis over CIRCA, MASS Alexandria and Townhouse Gallery.

Meskerem Assegued takes us on a walk in the Aethiopian country side to see the avant garde of traditional methods for the building and operation of Zoma Contemporary Art Center.

Artist Kofi Setordji was asked to address what it means to be innovative in thought and enlightening in artistic agency in contemporary Ghana through his work at Nubuke Foundation.

Master of conceptual acts Abdellah Karroum will meander through the intellects of these positions to capture their essence and relevance.

Session IV
Focus: Cotonou an emerging center
Marie-Cécile Zinsou, (Fondation Zinsou), Georges Adéagbo and Stephan Köhler (KulturForum Sud-Norg), Dominique Zinkpé (Regard Bénin) talk about how they are branding and contextualizing their city to attract an art crowd.

Chapter 2: Remains of the days
09:00- 11:30
Impulse speech
Old questions, New Answers? New Cartographies in Knowledge Production
Françoise Vergès
Social scientist Vergès presents a series of notions that were used to conceptualize a museum on Île de la Réunion, a small island in the Indian Ocean, on an African-Asian axis without a precolonial past.

Session V
What are we doing here? The objectives of foreign cultural representations
Uwe Rieken, Director Goethe Institut Dakar, Alban Corbier-Labasse, Director Institut Français Dakar, Eric Lawrie, Director Bristish Council Dakar, Antonio Perez-Hernandez, Cultural Attaché Spanish Embassy & Coordinator Instituto Cervantes, Kristine Kane, Public Affairs Officer American Center, will all provide answers to this simple question.

Koyo Kouoh adds a critical reading of foreign representations.

Session VI
Omnipotence and Omnipresence: the highs and lows of serving the nation through the arts

Ousseynou Wade, Dakar Biennale, Fatou Bintou Niang, National Gallery of Dakar, Samuel Sidibe, Musée National du Mali, Raphael Chikukwa, National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Abdoulaye Konate, Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers et Multimedia (CAMM) Bamako, Daouda Diarra, Ecole des Arts, Dakar, Awa Cheikh Diouf Camara, Maison de la Culture Douta Seck, Dakar,

Each tell us how it is to promote art and educate future artists from a government perspective

Independent curator N’Goné Fall will bring in her experience with working with these institutions


In the spring of 2009 Dakar experienced an unprecedent political change at the local government level. For the first time in the city’s political history, the government was led by an opposition coalition that sets out to thoroughly change the articulations and operational methods of supporting the arts. Oumar Ndao, Director of Culture and Tourism for the city of Dakar, presents the municipal grand plan for public-private partnerships in the arts.

CHAPTER 3: Area studies

Session VII
New-York, Rio de Janeiro, Visby, Istanbul
Anton Vidokle will speak about poetics and politics of distribution of art and ideas through projects such as e-flux journal, United Nations Plaza, Time/Bank and more.

Taking its cue from the term Third Stream Music—a musical genre that defines the synthesis of classical music and Jazz—Third Streaming makes art, fashion, music, design, food and business collide in the streets of New-York. Yona Backer tells us all about it.

Livia Paldi will speak about the Baltic Art Center (BAC) and how her diverse past involvements and working in different cultural and institutional environments support her future plans.

Marcio Botner will present the artist led production site and gallery A Gentil Carioca. As illustrated by its exhibition history, one of the gallery’s main aspirations resides in the nurturing and diffusion of artistic practices aware of their social, cultural, and institutional surroundings. A Gentil Carioca is also seen as a social hub, allowing artists and guests from various backgrounds to gather and impulse a global cultural movement aiming far beyond marketing considerations and local political debates.

Vasif Kortun interprets the case of institutional transformation in Istanbul of the last decade through his engagement with projects such as the Istanbul Biennial, Platform, Proje4L and SALT. The analysis will pivot around institutions’ possibility of producing new reality and their shelf-lives

Session VIII
11:30–12:30Introduced by Marta Kuzma (OCA, Office of Contemporary Art Norway) and featuring Linus Elmes (UKS), Mohammed Fadlabi (One Night Only), Anne Szefer-Karlsen (Hordaland Art Centre), Jet Pascua (Small Projects) and Steffen Håndlykken and Stian Eide Kluge (1857). This case study will lay out a grass roots impulse that is assuming the scene of contemporary art and how it relates to international exchange.

Session IX
Brussels, Seoul, Zurich, Berlin
Using the structure of the different departments of WIELS and the relations between them as starting point, Dirk Snauwaert addresses the changing functions of a ‘Kunsthalle’ or institution for temporary exhibitions. All functions of a Kunsthalle are still oriented toward the temporary display of material artworks—as was the case in its historic precursor, the ‘Salon’ – rather than in immaterial aspects exploring art practice, ideas, esthetic experience and discourse.

Sunjung Kim tells how her curatorial office, Samuso, provides context for the South Korean art scene and gives an account of her pivotal role in linking contemporary art in South Korea and the international art world.

On the occasion of the opening of Casa Daros in Rio de Janeiro later this year, Hans-Michael Herzog will outline the diverse range of activities going on at this new art, exhibition and education center and their ideas for international collaborations.

In her presentation entitled New Spaces for Negotiating Art (and) History in African Cities, Kerstin Pinther will introduce the concept of her project on alternative art spaces. She will explore how methodological and theoretical programmes and discourses that have been developed in these spaces, can be connected to academic disciplines and fields of knowledge and their theoretical approaches (Art History/Visual Culture Studies).

Juan Gaitan

Session X
CONCLUSION: What is to be done?

Koyo Kouoh, Abdellah Karroum, Oumar Sall, N’Goné Fall and Juan Gaitan

Radio Appartement 22 will stream conversations from and about the symposium throughout the duration. www.radioappartement22.com

The November 2011 press release has attracted an unexpected international interest for this event. Due to this success, Raw Material Company was obliged to stop the registration process earlier than indicated. We apologize to everyone we could admit.

About Raw Material Company
Raw Material Company is a not for profit center for art, knowledge and society. It is an art initiative unfolding within the realms of exhibition making, commissioning, knowledge sharing, and archiving of theory and criticism. It works to foster appreciation and growth of artistic and intellectual creativity in Africa.

Condition Report at Raw Material Company
Share - Condition Report at Raw Material Company
  • Share
Click to subscribe to e-flux and be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements
Subscribe to e-flux
Be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements.
Subscribe to architecture
Explore the most recent content from e-flux architecture and urbanism
Subscribe to e-flux programs
Keep up-to-date on all upcoming talks, screenings, and exhibitions at e-flux in New York