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Thursday, April 12, 2018

May art save us, since governments can not

Por sumily

From 1 to 54 the numbers of a continent and the countries that formed it are displayed. In 2013, it was the year of the first edition of the fair. Since then three are the annual appointments proposed 1-54 in three venues: London, New York and Marrakech.

However, the Marrakesh edition has other notable spaces such as the participation of 17 galleries from nine countries, six African galleries, 60 recognized and emerging artists from 25 African countries or children of the diaspora and the holding of a forum for screenings and debates on the decolonization, curated by Omar Berrada. Special projects were also announced off with the Museum of Contemporary African Art Al Madeen, the Yves Saint Laurent Museum, the Montresso Foundation and the Comptoir des Mines, Le 18 and Riad Yima galleries.

2018 is the year in which the seventh Marrakech Art Biennial should be held, however, the issue was affected a few months ago and the worst is that no one knows if it will resume, or when or how. The plan was for the Contemporary African Art Fair of art galleries to benefit from the convening of the Biennial to captivate, in parallel, the collectors of the world to the Maghrebi red city and continue to strengthen this as the main brand of the art market contemporary African.

Without Bienal, la1-54, way in which the fair is also known, continued with its plans and arrived in that way, the last weekend of February, at the majestic hotel La Mamounia, with its relations, its absolutely unsubstantial achievements and the entire horizon open to a new headquarters, finally, in African territory.

By the year 2013, the first edition of 1-54 had been at the Somerset House in London, at the request of the Moroccan Touria El Glaoui, daughter of the prestigious painter Hassan El Glaoui, a visionary businesswoman. Five editions have been held in London and three in New York since that pioneering incursion of African art with a market vocation in the global showcase. Since then the number of buyers has been increasing, year by year.

According to a London gallery owner, there is still an aesthetic novelty in contemporary art in Africa and they have the best prices with respect to the rest of the world by offering excellent unique pieces of artists that are quoted internationally and are getting between 1,000 and 70,000 euros.According to the Moroccan magazine Diptyk, there is an interest to bring the market closer to its homeland, in the ART X line of Lagos or the Zeitz MOCAA in Cape Town and that encourages this Moroccan version of the fair.

In the words of the representative of the writer and artist Mahi Binebine, who was born in Marrakech, it is about confronting the African dream of African realities.A city that at the foot of the Atlas Mountains personifies the soil from which the artists come and the landscapes in which they work. Arabic, Berber and Frenchified, is all that and offers it.In addition, collectors from France, Belgium or the Middle East, not necessarily present in English-speaking events have shown interest in this art. The African art market today expands.