With an aim to foster an axis for ideas, exchange and debate, the first 1-54 Forum acted as the theoretical substructure to 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair. The programme encompassed keynote lectures, ‘in-conversation’ artist talks, panel discussions, book launch and an associate film programme, traversing critical subjects and activity within the sphere of contemporary African art, its market, institutions and independent art spaces. Thematic discussions drew on perspectives from across and outside the African continent to navigate key social-political and cultural contexts surrounding the frame of 1-54.

16 October

Opening Panel

A discussion with Stefano Rabolli Pansera, Elvira Dyangani Ose, Edson Chagas and led by Koyo Kouoh


Market, Economies and Galleries: The Genesis of New Markets

A keynote with Paul Hewitt


17 October

Market, Economies and Galleries: Exploring New Territories

A panel discussion with Antonia Carver, Bisi Silva, Chab Touré and led by Valerie Kabov


Artist Talk: Otobong Nkanga

Hans Ulrich Obrist in conversation with Otobong Nkanga


Artist Talk: Godfried Donkor

Hans Ulrich Obrist in conversation with Godfried Donkor


Book Launch: Condition Report on Building Art Institutions in Africa

Introduction and conversation between Koyo Kouoh and Zineb Sedira


18 October

Private & Public Collections: Building an African Collection of Contemporary Art

A discussion with Bassam Chaïtou, Robert Devereux and led by Koyo Kouoh


Private and Public Collections: Panel on Public Collections

A discussion with Chris Dercon, Gill Saunders and led by Dr Maria Balshaw


Artist Talk: Not Vital

Koyo Kouoh in conversation with Not Vital


19 October

Artist Talk: Olafur Eliasson and Carsten Höller

Koyo Kouoh in conversation with Olafur Eliasson and Carsten Höller


20 October

Criticism & Publishing

A conversation with Simon Njami, Dr. Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung and Brendon Bell-Roberts


All past 1-54 Forum, VIP and Special Project events can also be listened to on iTunes, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and Amazon Music, amongst other podcast distribution platforms. Subscribe here.