VOLUMES: Timed Online Book Auction Highlights | Looking Both Ways

Mtha Poni selects her favourite book

21/05/2022     Timed-Online Auctions, Announcements

VOLUMES is a special Timed Online sale from 19-26 May, focusing on art books and books by and about artists covering everything from rare and collectible ephemera to reference works and artist’s monographs

Aspire Art's Cataloguers and Researchers have picked their favourite books. 

The 2003 exhibition, Looking Both Ways (Lot 18) at the Museum of African Art held its ground in the New York art scene which at the time remained mostly occupied by British- American art. The exhibition featured several artists from across the African continent, all born or brought up in Africa but living elsewhere in the world. Looking Both Ways sought to raise questions surrounding the nature of ‘African-ness’ from outside the continent. 


The book, Looking Both Ways: Art of the Contemporary African Diaspora (Lot 18), features a catalogue of essays by experts in various fields discussing the discourses surrounding the works of each artist – with a few of my personal favourite artists included. Wangechi Mutu is interviewed by curatorial consultant Lauri Firstenberg on how she toys with the idea of hybrid cultures and issues of cultural authenticity with photomontages. The curator of the exhibition, Laurie Ann Farrell writes on Ghada Amer who explores sexuality in different societies and Moshekwa Langa is in conversation with historian and writer Kobena Mercer on the art of place – making and the fickleness of geographies and territories. The book is a must have for anyone interested in contemporary art – especially from Africa and the diaspora. It not only gives one insight into the works of the artists featured in the exhibition but also how experts place the ideas behind the works within contemporary African art theory.