1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair is delighted to announce its return to Somerset House for the 11th consecutive year. Taking place from 12 – 15 October 2023 (VIP & Press Preview 12 October), the 2023 edition of 1-54 London will host over 60 international exhibitors, its largest number to date.
Of this year’s 62 international exhibitors, one third are from the African continent and 14 galleries will participate at the fair’s London edition for the first time. New and returning exhibitors will present over 170 artists working across an array of mediums from painting and sculpture to mixed media and installation.
Specially commissioned for the Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court at Somerset House, the Moroccan artist Amine El Gotaibi presents his most ambitious work to date: “Illuminate the Light” in collaboration with MCC Gallery in Marrakech, Morocco. The artist presents twelve individual geometric sculptures inspired by the seeds of a pomegranate that vary widely in shape and colour, to represent the diversity and abundance of the African continent. Wielding light as a solid medium within the sculptures, El Gotaibi also uses light as a metaphor to foster positive stories of Africa to counter the West’s frequent stereotypes of the “dark continent.” At dusk, the sculptures transform into luminous installations, underscoring the artist’s philosophy that “out of darkness, light emerges”.
Now in its fourth consecutive year, 1-54’s continued partnership with Christie’s signals the fair’s strong and dynamic relationship with the global auction house. The collaboration also demonstrates Christie’s commitment to showcasing contemporary African art to its global client base and enhancing exposure for the fair internationally. This year’s collaboration will see Christie’s host the second iteration of 1-54 Presents, a new programme of pop-up exhibitions by 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair, from 10- 13th October at their London space.
Thanks to 1-54’s long-standing partnership with Artsy, visitors will also be able to explore, connect with, and collect from all the galleries and artists online from 12 – 29 October at artsy.net/1-54.