Virtual Africa

English

Africa

Virtual Africa is an international project that aims to implement and promote works that explore the interaction of the arts and sciences and the arts and new technologies in Africa.

Virtual Africa is a space where events, projects and discussions on art, science, and technology taking place in Africa can be made visible internationally. A series of podcasts are currently produced and developed by practitioners or professionals working at the intersection of the disciplines. It is an extension of Leonardo/Olats initiative which has sown the first seeds of this groundbreaking multimedia project.

Virtual Africa is first concerned about creating a ‘network of networks’ between organizations and non-institutional players in Africa and the other continents. Indeed, the idea of diaspora is central to this project, especially considering how the modern day diasporas have a continuous and vibrant ongoing relationship with their native African countries. As such, meaning as an archipelic project, it enables us to view the ‘world-as-a-whole’ (Edouard Glissant).

Logo by Cassini Nazir.

Episodes

Passages par le féminin

Recorded on 2019-11-21

Le titre de ce podcast est inspiré de l’oeuvre éponyme d’Ernest Breleur dont le passage à la Maelle Galerie nous conduit à nous entretenir avec Olivia Breleur sur le traitement du vivant dans l’art contemporain. D’Orlan à Fred Forest, de Jean-François Boclé à Fannie Sosa, nous évoquons l’actualité de la galerie et les préjugés portant […]

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Maëlle Galerie

Recorded on 2019-11-21

Créée en 2012, la Maëlle Galerie soutient la création contemporaine à l’échelle nationale et internationale. Installée dans le quartier de Belleville à Paris, la galerie formule le vœu de façonner une « pensée archipélique » et est résolument tournée vers des questionnements liés à l’espace, à la mémoire, au corps et à l’identité. Retour avec […]

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Revisiter les savoirs

Recorded on 2019-11-12

Focus dans cette seconde partie de l’entretien sur la scène artistique contemporaine camerounaise et sur le rôle des institutions dans la promotion d’une avant-garde intellectuelle et artistique. Aude-Christel Mbga, diplômée de l’I.F.A, redit l’importance qu’elle accorde au développement de pratiques locales, et à la distance critique qu’elle entretient avec la diaspora.

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Vers un art de l’ambiance

Recorded on 2019-11-09

La deuxième partie de cet entretien avec Elise Atangana démarre sur la question des diasporas et le regard qu’elle porte sur celles-ci. Nous nous intéressons ensuite à l’usage des technologies qu’elle observe dans le champ de l’art contemporain (africain). Le podcast se referme sur son actualité et son désir de s’ouvrir à de nouvelles géographies, […]

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Chocs esthétiques

Recorded on 2019-11-09

Elise Atangana est une commissaire d’exposition indépendante basée à Paris. Autodidacte, elle se forme notamment auprès de Simon Njami et participe depuis aux évènements majeurs de la scène artistique contemporaine. La première partie de cet entretien est consacrée à son parcours et à ses rencontres, de la biennale de Venise à celle de Dakar, ainsi […]

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Les utopies non-alignées

Recorded on 2019-11-08

Du 17 novembre 2018 au 17 mars 2019, le centre des arts et médias de Karlsruhe (ZKM) en collaboration avec Ker Thiossane (Dakar), Faku’gesi et le WitsArtMuseum (Johannesburg) organisait une exposition consacrée aux pratiques numériques et aux imaginaires à l’oeuvre sur le continent africain. Oulimata Gueye, commissaire de l’exposition, revient dans ce podcast sur son […]

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Parcours de vie

Recorded on 2019-11-01

Aude-Christel Mbga fait partie d’une nouvelle génération de critiques et historiens de l’art formés au commissariat d’exposition à l’étranger mais exerçant sur le continent. Dans ce podcast, elle évoque son parcours qui l’a conduit du Cameroun aux Pays-Bas et des rencontres qui l’ont marqué. Il y est question de son passage par de nombreuses écoles […]

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Virtual Africa Remix #1

Recorded on 2019-05-17

For the 50th anniversary of the Leonardo Journal last year, we decided to release a multilingual remix of the podcasts already published on the Virtual Africa channel in order to illustrate the scope and diversity of the topics covered and the vast amount of work that still remains to be done. Each segment of the […]

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Tanzania Festival in Dallas

Recorded on 2018-06-22

On April 28, 2018, we had the chance to stop by the Tanzania Festival in Dallas. Maria Mosomi, the manager of the event, sit with us to talk about the relationships between Tanzanian and American cultures and the influence of her work as a psychiatric nurse in this intercultural dialog.

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Introducing Kapital Movie Industry Corporation

Recorded on 2016-05-24

Striving to become the “Hollywood of South Sudan”, Kapital Movie Industry is a network of visionary young artists, documentarists, Graphic Designers, Filmmakers, Web Designers, Film Directors and Visual Effect Artists who are interested in telling the story of their new country and helping to build its future. With the PeaceHackCamp they organize each year, the […]

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The New Afronaut

Recorded on 2016-04-12

In Christina de Middel’s website, one can read the following: “In 1964 a Zambian science teacher named Edwuard Makuka decided to train the first African crew to travel to the moon. His plan was to use an aluminium rocket to put a woman, two cats and a missionary into Space”. Unfortunately the project never came […]

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The New Afronaut

Recorded on 2016-04-12

In Christina de Middel’s website, one can read the following: “In 1964 a Zambian science teacher named Edwuard Makuka decided to train the first African crew to travel to the moon. His plan was to use an aluminium rocket to put a woman, two cats and a missionary into Space”. Unfortunately the project never came […]

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Being a Young Designer in Cairo

Recorded on 2016-03-11

Nora Abushadi is a talented designer who has been developing several projects touching, for example, upon the implementation of a multi-sensorial dining experience in Cairo and a speculative design for costume and stage designers, or even the destruction of literary culture by islamic extremists. Nora is a Virtual Africa Fellowship and has been awarded the […]

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Announcing an Afrofuturism Podcast Series

Recorded on 2016-02-26

Tobias Van Veen is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Montreal who wrote his dissertation on Afrofuturism and the interplay of chronopolitics, concept-techniques and myth-science. In this introductory podcast, we touch upon the history of Afrofuturism in art, performance, music and literature and its relationship with time, space, science-fiction and issues of race. Bumpers […]

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African Robots

Recorded on 2015-12-02

Entirely made of raw materials, Ralph Borland’s robotic art is inspired by wire works done by local craftsmen with whom he has developed a collaborative art practice throughout the years. This episode touches upon topics such as the history of automata in Africa, the field of ethnomathematics, and his current research project ‘Global Arenas’ which […]

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A Lovely Weather: In Defense of Waste!

Recorded on 2015-11-09

Following the first part of our discussion, Trevor describes two recent works of his series paintings, In Defense of Waste and Carbone-D. He comes back to both the possible role of artists in the act of creation and the responsibility of public institutions in the environmental crisis. He also shares ideas about the future of […]

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A Lovely Weather: Eco-Cancer and Garbage Art

Recorded on 2015-11-05

Morgan Trevor lives in Nigeria and uses art to interrogate his environment. Inspired by the writings of Suzanne Moser and Lisa Dilling on climate change, he makes use of visual metaphors to gauge the general public’s awareness and understanding of environmental issues. He also describes two of his work series, Eco-Cancer and Garbage In/Out. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Trevor_Morgan2 […]

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Creative Technology and Soft Power

Recorded on 2015-10-23

What role that art and culture can play in Africa ? This is a question that artist designer and curator Pierre Christophe Gam addresses in this podcast from his recent participation to an international symposium on creativity and economical growth in Abidjan, which also touched upon issues of cultural diplomacy and soft power. Bumpers by […]

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Making Africa, Afropolis and the African Renaissance

Recorded on 2015-10-22

A conversation on African Renaissance, through the Afro-Polis and Making Africa exhibitions that London based polymath artist and cultural entrepreneur Pierre-Christophe Gam conceived and helped curated with the ambition to tour in Europe and Africa. Bumpers by Ronan Martin.

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Émoticônes et Diversité Culturelle

Recorded on 2015-10-21

Kofi Sika Latzoo est directeur artistique des studios Efixx à Dakar, leader du chapitre sénégalais auprès de l’IGDA (International Game Developers Association), responsable du programme d’innovation de la NASA au Senegal (Space Up challenge) et co-fondateur, avec Bacely Yorobi, du Game Camp qui a pour ambition de créer un écosysteme favorable à l’émergence d’industries logicielles […]

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After Fakugesi. The Post-African Futures Labs

Recorded on 2015-10-20

Together with Tegan Bristow and Jepchumba, two leading figures in the African digital scene and co-founders (with Christo Doherty) of the now iconic Fakugesi festival, we share ideas about emerging trends of digital culture and their ongoing collaboration project with the Post-African Future Africa labs. “Add the power”. http://futurelabafrica.org/

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A Bid for ISEA 2018 in Durban

Recorded on 2015-09-10

Greg Streak is a multimedia artist and Lecturer at Durban University of Technology. The podcast begins with a short overview of his own practice and his vision for young artists in South Africa. Together with other African art activists, he calls for the first meeting of the International Symposium of Electronic Arts to take place […]

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Ephemerality and Cultural Memory in Digital Performances

Recorded on 2015-09-07

Born in Trinidad and Tobago, Henry Daniel received his training as a dancer both in the Caribbean, North America and Western Europe – which provides him with a specific relationship to dance and African expressions. I engaged him in a conversation on the very notion of ephemerality in dance and the connections between rituals and […]

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FabCamp, W.Afate, Woelab!

Recorded on 2015-08-17

Labellisé “premier espace africain de démocratie technologique”, le WɔɛLab compte probablement parmi les rares fablabs présents sur le continent. Situé à Lomé, au Togo, le WɔɛLab est un “espace d’innovation partagée où s’élabore au quotidien de nouvelles approches de la collaboration productive vertueuse en contexte africain.” Son équipe est notamment à l’origine de la très […]

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L’Africaine D’Architecture et le Style Néo-Vernaculaire

Recorded on 2015-08-14

Ce podcast est la première partie d’un entretien avec Koffi Sénamé, architecte et anthropologue de nationalité togolaise, fondateur de l’espace de démocratisation technologique Woelab à Lomé, dans lequel nous évoquons des questions liées à l’urbanisme et à l’architecture néo-vernaculaire en particulier. http://www.lafricainedarchitecture.com/

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Open Culture in South Sudan

Recorded on 2015-07-15

Stephen Kovats describes the Open Culture Agency which works in Africa and in particular in South Sudan enabling open source strategies to empower local communities, access to public domain information.They have worked both with local state governments and citizen organisations such as the KVA Kapital Virtual Academy organised by local medical students. http://openculture.agency/kva-kapital-virtual-academy/ Bumpers by […]

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أرشفة الثقافة البصرية في مصر

Recorded on 2015-06-25

كجزء من مشروع اضطراب الإبداعي، مقابلة مع هيثم نوار حول أرشفة الثقافة البصرية في مصر. العلاقة بين مشهد فنون .الميديا (الوسائط الجديدة) و الفنون الرقمية في مصر وأفريقيا و دور المؤسسات التعليمية 沖縄中部にも上陸!話題の最新脱毛SHRを受けてみませんか?

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نتخذ الفن العربي إلى أعلى مستوى من الابتكار واستخدام التكنولوجيا

Recorded on 2015-06-22

مقابلة مع ياسر جرادي ، الفنان التونسي والموسيقار الذي خلق الأعمال المبتكرة في العالم العربي . في البودكاست ، ناقشنا التقدم في فن الخط وكذلك استخدام التكنولوجيا ووسائل الإعلام الجديدة. تحدثنا أيضا عن أهمية إقامة اتصالات في جميع أنحاء العالم مع فنانين آخرين لخلق تبادل المعرفة و التعبير الفني Bumpers by Ronan Martin.

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An Impossible Cyclopedia with Haytham Nawar

Recorded on 2015-06-11

A podcast between Roger Malina, Yvan Tina and Haytham Nawar, director and co-founder of Di-Egy Fest, the first festival dedicated to digital arts in Egypt (www.di-egyfest.com). Collection of visual materials and issues of translation between communication systems (iconic, pictographic…) are discussed along with the need to develop and strengthen curatorial networks in the Arabic and […]

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Voyage et Prison du Sens

Recorded on 2015-06-08

A partir d’une anecdote sur Paul Klee, Yasser Jeradi, auteur de l’un des airs les plus populaires de la révolution tunisienne (“Dima Dima”), nous entretient sur son rapport à la calligraphie et aux outils numériques qu’il considère comme de nouveaux “espaces de sensibilités”. Le podcast s’achève sur l’évocation d’un festival d’art numérique dans le désert […]

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Ontologies Vocales et Technologies Endogènes (1/2)

Recorded on 2015-05-26

Avec l’explosion de la bulle internet, les réseaux sociaux offrent l’opportunité de fournir des informations à des personnes qui se trouvent dans des endroits distants. Quels usages sont fait des réseaux sociaux en Afrique et quelles applications peut-on en tirer ? Gilles Kounou, ingénieur en système informatique et génie logiciel fournit quelques éléments de réponse […]

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Ontologies Vocales et Technologies Endogènes (2/2)

Recorded on 2015-05-25

Avec l’explosion de la bulle internet, les réseaux sociaux offrent l’opportunité de fournir des informations à des personnes qui se trouvent dans des endroits distants. Quels usages sont fait des réseaux sociaux en Afrique et quelles applications peut-on en tirer ? Gilles Kounou, ingénieur en système informatique et génie logiciel fournit quelques éléments de réponse […]

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Faire palpiter les sens

Recorded on 2015-05-11

Poursuivant le dialogue autour des notions de rythme et de synergie, Mohamed Aziz Chafchaouni ouvre dans la deuxième partie de cet entretien des pistes de réflexion pour une réappropriation futuriste (et contemporaine) de l’essence africaine. Cependant, l’essentialisation des formes ne représente t-elle pas elle aussi un danger pour l’art ? Bumpers by Ronan Martin.

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A Chess / Digital Art Project

Recorded on 2015-05-08

Al Banda is a start-up consultant by profession but has a passion for chess, programming language and creative coding. He worked as the manager of one of Africa’s leading innovation clubs and after having contributed to the development of a social scratch club to help secondary school students learn programming concepts, he and his people […]

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The Kenyan Diaspora Voices: The Role of Emerging Technology in Performance Art

Recorded on 2015-05-06

Jabali Afrika has been making Kenyan rhythms for 22-years and they are still strong and thriving. This creative Kenyan troupe has exceeded all expectations to remain relevant in the music arena. In this podcast Justo Asikoye, one of the founding members of Jabali Afrika sheds light into their endurance and musical experiences, from their humble […]

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The Kenyan Diaspora Voices: The Role of Emerging Technology in Radio

Recorded on 2015-04-28

The Kenya immigrant population is frequently nostalgic and constantly retell stories of their homeland. The American culture is a culture shock and can energize or stifle an immigrant. Survival and eventual success in the US depends on perseverance and most importantly, the support system. The One Mic Show is an outlet for East Africans to […]

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Appel à contributions pour un laboratoire d’idées

Recorded on 2015-04-17

Dans la première partie de cet entretien, Mohamed Aziz Chafchaouni tente de répondre à la question “Qu’est-ce que Afrique Virtuelle ?” au regard des phénomènes de mondialisation et des possibilités offertes par les techno-sciences. Après avoir discuté, entre autres, des enjeux de démocratisation du savoir et d’une nécessaire réappropriation de l’outil technologique, Mohamed A. Chafchaouni […]

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Reliquaries and Afrofuturisms

Recorded on 2015-04-15

Public sculptor and new media artist Andrew Scott welcomes us in his workshop where he creates his reliquaries that may be perceived differently in daylight or darkness. The laser cut relief sculpture functions as a traditional sculpture by day, with light playing across the faceted surface. By night however, projection mapping brings the work’s subject […]

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What the Meteorite Craters Tell Us

Recorded on 2015-04-03

In this podcast, Marcus Neustetter and Yvan Tina talk about the first african space art projects and their underlying ideologies. After having discussed the social and economical impact of these projects, M. Neustetter makes a call for a bigger picture of the cultural and geological history of Africa. http://www.sutherlandreflections.com/ Bumpers by Ronan Martin.

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Mapping the Space: Low-tech for Local Relevances

Recorded on 2015-03-31

As founding member of The Trinity Session, along with Stephen Hobbes, Marcus Neustetter has been involved in several artistic projects in the Southern African region. This podcast presents a brief overview of his work and the local approach he promotes through the use of low technology. http://www.thetrinitysession.com/ Bumpers by Ronan Martin.

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Nubean Textures: Locating Islamic Culture in Virtual Environments

Recorded on 2015-03-23

Islamic calligraphy and architecture have a long history of practice in the oriental world. Huda Hashim relocate parts of this story in the virtual environments she models with 3D animation softwares. By designing a 3D art gallery, it is now transformed into a “web gallery” that can be accessed online by a larger audience. Furthermore, […]

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The Emerging and Disappearing Networks of The Trinity Session

Recorded on 2015-03-22

Directed by Stephen Hobbs and Marcus Neustetter, The Trinity Session is a contemporary art production team defined by exchanges with their home-city Johannesburg, in relation to Africa and similar developed / developing contexts. Key activities include: temporary interventions and performances, in addition to producing and curating large scale public art programmes. http://www.thetrinitysession.com/ Bumpers by Ronan […]

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The Black Body Under Construction: The Hottentot Then and Now

Recorded on 2015-02-19

In this podcast, Edleeca and Poe unpack the theoretical underpinnings at work in Kim Kardashian’s attempt to “break the Internet.” Exploring the historical and scientific contexts within which black racial constructions of difference evolved, they debate the relevance of these contexts and their employment in justifying past, and present, models of behavioral and sexual deviance. […]

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Rencontre avec Mohamed Youssef

Recorded on 2015-02-10

A Podcast with Mohamed H.Youssef, an independent Egyptian artist who experiments with a large diversity of media and different forms of visual and plastic arts: artistic booklets, digital works, paintings… Since 2006, his work has been focusing mainly on digital arts, and particularly on interactive spaces (with, for example, art pieces such as The Table, […]

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Présentation de la Plateforme RAMI au Liban

Recorded on 2014-10-21

Claudine Dussolier, Abdo Nawar et Ricardo Mbarkho nous parlent de leur prochain livre et de la plateforme RAMI (Rencontres Arts et Multimédia Internationales) qui développe depuis une dizaine d’années des projets d’échanges internationaux en Afrique du nord et dans le bassin méditerranéen. http://ramimed.com/#&panel1-1 Bumpers by Ronan Martin.

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