2016 has been quite the year for contemporary African art.
At the beginning of the year, the cultural institution that is The Amory Show, kick started the pro-African art movement and brought contemporary African artists and galleries to New York via its VOLTA NY edition.
The Ghanian El Anatsui was the first African artist appointed as an honorary academician by London’s Royal Academy.
South African photographer Pieter Hugo collaborated with luxury fashion label Bottega Veneta on their advertising campaign.
Zietz Mocca, the world’s biggest contemporary African art museum, began construction in Cape Town, South Africa (due to open 2017).
Countless experts commented that there is an upcoming African art market boom fast approaching (we believe it is already here!)
Sotheby’s bet big on African art and opened a new department dedicated to the African art movement as well as appointed a new head – Hannah O’Leary.
1:54 Contemporary African Art fair slayed Frieze week in London, hosting the biggest and best events yet (how sick were those Zak Ové statues in the middle of Somerset House’s courtyard? And the VIP parties? Selfie moments!
Paris hosted its first ever contemporary African art fair via AKAA as did West Africa – whose inaugural edition of ART X Lagos got the whole continent talking.
Ghana decided to join in on the African art fun and the new Gallery 1957 suddenly became the hippest African art gallery in town (still got a hangover from their Frieze week party held at Momo).
We fell in love with many new contemporary African artists and photographers from Mohau Modisakeng to Abe Odedina to Serge Attukwei Clottey.
A major artwork by Turner Prize-winning Yinka Shonibare was acquired by The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art in Washington.
Nigerian artist Njideka Akunyili Crosby broke a record at Sotheby’s New York selling one of her artworks for US$1,092,500 (over three times its estimate!)
And the parties! Oh the parties!
It is only the beginning for contemporary African art. This is the tip of the massive iceberg, remember that you heard it here first! So, in no particular order, check out 20 talented photographers that we believe are going to be even bigger deals come 2017: