International Sculpture Center

   


Complete text in print version available at fine newsstands and through subscription.
Please visit our Membership page for more information.

<Back to Contents page>


Out of Africa: A Conversation with El Anatsui


by Robert Preece

A “cloth” made by sewing thousands of recycled, crushed, and flattened liquor bottle tops. A 10-foot-tall installation of redundant newspaper printing plates used for obituary pages and re-used as sculptural material to comment on temporary—and disposable—human lives. And rough, chain-sawed wood forming a line, an abstracted Visa Queue, depicting hopes, dreams, desperation, and global inequality. These are just three works spanning five decades of artistic production by El Anatsui, who is widely regarded as one of the foremost African artists of his generation. His work refers to the history of the African continent, drawing on traditional African idioms as well as Western art practices.

Born and raised in Ghana, West Africa, El Anatsui studied sculpture at the College of Art, University of Science and Technology, in Kumasi, central Ghana. Since 1996, he has been a professor of sculpture at the University of Nigeria at Nsukka in the southeastern part of the country. He originally joined the university’s Fine and Applied Arts Department as a lecturer back in 1975.


Many Came Back, 2005. Liquor bottle tops and copper wire, 213 x 277 cm. Courtesy October Gallery, London.

To see pdf of this article-interview at the artdesigncafe.com library, click [http://www.artdesigncafe.com/Out-of-Africa-El-Anatsui-Sculpture-Venice-Biennial-Robert-Preece-2006].

Complete text in print version available at fine newsstands and through subscription.
Please visit our Membership page for more information.


<Back to Contents page>

Sculpture Magazine Archives
To advertise in Sculpture magazine, call 718.812.8826 or e-mail advertising@sculpture.org.
To contact the editor please email editor@sculpture.org