Introducing The Moleskine Foundation
After 10 years of existence lettera27 has entered a new phase of its evolution taking its heritage – people, values and projects – to a wider scale. On October 24th lettera27 became the Moleskine Foundation. The change from lettera27 to Moleskine Foundation is more than just a rename. It’s a symbol of a long relationship and process that lasted more than 10 years. Since the birth of lettera27 founded by the same people who created the Moleskine Brand, Moleskine has supported the organisation through funding and mutual projects, which formed a deep intrinsically interconnected partnership. Today, with the increased financial support from the Moleskine Company that will allow the Foundation to exist, we can put our mutual expertise to create a bigger social impact on a grander scale. It’s crucial to note that the Foundation will operate in complete independence from the Moleskine company and will pursue its non-profit commitment by focusing on Quality Education. Our mission is to provide youth with unconventional educational tools and experiences that help foster critical thinking, creativity and life-long learning, with the focus on communities affected by cultural and social deprivation.
We hope that you will share our excitement for expanding and enriching this canvas of creativity, culture and knowledge that we have weaved together in years and will join us on our new journey. Find out how you can get involved and subscribe to our newsletter to be updated on our activities.
Why Africa? next issues
This month Moleskine Foundation’s column presents a new piece. In the framework of the Lubumbashi Biennale titled “Éblouissements” we feature the interview by Lucrezia Cipitelli with the curator of this fifth edition: Toma Muteba Luntumbue. Luntumbue explains how he applied his curatorial practice to respect and enhance the characteristics of the contemporary art field in Lubumbashi. Inspired by Joseph Tonda who addresses the notions of real or fake, of authenticity, of the ephemeral which is replaced, and the notion of the simulacra, Luntumbue takes the metaphor of the Éblouissements related to a kind of fascination but also a kind of blindness, to explore the encounter between African and Western culture in Congo. He also talks about the work of the artist Sammy Baloji at Atelier Picha and the artist’s engagement with the population to create a new idea of what an art Biennale should be.
WikiAfrica Schools program
WikiAfrica Schools program launched last May by the Foundation in partnership with Wiki in Africa is continuing its course. The program consists in a 8 months deep-dive pilot that builds Wikipedia knowledge within 4 schools in South Africa with the objective of introducing WikiAfrica as part of each school’s curriculum. WikiAfrica Schools aims to be an educational tool that contributes to increase the critical thinking skills of the students and transform the schools from the mere knowledge receivers to knowledge producers. This will also address the issue of the current lack of information on Africa by Africans on internet by introducing a new generation of editors based in Africa, to Wikipedia. The program is ongoing and has completed the first stage of selection of schools, teachers and students training, discussion of the model to be applied, assessment of the inclusion of the activity in school and extra-school schedules at more playful and self-mastered moments by students themselves.
From October 27th to November 05th, Royal African Society, London, U.K.
Film Africa is an annual London film festival celebrating the best African cinema from across the continent and diaspora brought to you by The Royal African Society. Established in 2011, every year Film Africa brings diverse London audiences a high quality and wide-ranging film programme accompanied by a vibrant series of events, including director Q&As, talks and discussions, professional workshops and master classes, school screenings and family activities, the Industry Forum and Film Africa LIVE! music nights. Film Africa also recognises and supports new film making talent through the Baobab Award for Best Short Film and the Audience Award for Best Feature Film.
Les ateliers de la pensée
November 1-4, Dakar, Senegal
The new century opens to great historical change: Africa, and the South in general, is emerging as one of the privileged theaters where the future of the planet is already playing. The moment is therefore unique to revive the design of a critical thinking that has confidence in its own word, able to anticipate, to realize and to open new paths to the challenges of our time. The central theme of this edition of Les Ateliers de la Pensée will be the planetary condition and political life. It will bring together fifty intellectuals and artists from the continent and its diaspora to deal with different disciplinary perspectives such as decolonization and circulation of knowledge, transformations of gender relations and sexuality, state of the boundaries, contemporary figures of religion, psychic infrastructures, forms of urbanism and renewal of cultures. Among the numerous intellectuals we highlight the presence of our advisor Simon Njami.
November 1-19, New York City, U.S.A.
In just ten years, Performa has distinctly influenced the contemporary art world and audiences alike about the very nature and meaning of artists’ performance. Performa 17 will features AFROGLOSSIA and South African Pavilion “Without Borders”. Thess two programs focused on Africa explore a broad swathe of work by 15 artists living in or originating from five different African countries. The AFROGLOSSIA program for Performa 17 highlights a range of artistic voices and coalesces diverse perspectives from various regions of the African continent into a single program platform. The South African Pavilion Without Walls at Performa 17 lets the Institute take a deeper look at the country in order to conduct an in-depth investigation into the artistic practices developing in the post-apartheid era. Among the various artists involved in the project, we highlights the presence of Nicholas Hlobo, see here the notebook he made for our collection.
Art X Lagos
November 3-5, Lagos, Nigeria
Launched in 2016, ART X Lagos is West Africa’s first international art fair, which was designed to showcase the best and most innovative contemporary art from the African continent and diaspora, and to widen Nigeria’s connection to the art scene across Africa and internationally. Through its contribution to the increased visibility of African artists, ART X Lagos aims to reinforce the visual arts as an important component of the creative industry in Nigeria and Africa, and to position Lagos as an emergent cultural capital on the continent. The 2017 edition of ART X Lagos will deliver a broader, dynamic program of exhibitions, talks and interactive projects.
November 3-5, Turin, Italy
Artissima is Italy’s most important contemporary art fair. Since its establishment in 1994, it has combined the presence of an international market with a focus on experimentation and research. Nearly two hundred galleries from around the world participate every year. In addition to the fair, Artissima is also composed of three art sections, headed by a board of international curators and museum directors, devoted to emerging artists, drawings and rediscovering the great pioneers of contemporary art. Among the various artists and galleries we point out the presence of Joel Andrianomearisoa at Primo Marella Gallery booth. Joel is one of the authors of our notebook collection, click here to see his amazing couple of notebooks.
Festival of African Cinema
November 3-12, Verona, Italy
The Verona Festival of African Cinema was established with the purpose of promoting the African continent and facing the issues related to it by focusing on its cinema and by moving away from the narrative of war and poverty which the media often use to portray it. As a result, a new vision of the continent comes through, directly from the people who live and breathe Africa daily. The festival focuses on the following fields: culture, society, human rights and education. Through screenings and events, (photographic exhibitions, conferences, plays, concerts, etc.) the festival promotes interculturalism and dialogue, which are fundamental for human and social growth.
AKAA, Also Known As Africa Art Fair
November 10-12, Paris, France
Following the success of its first edition in 2016, AKAA – Also Known As Africa – will return on November 10-12, 2017 at the Carreau du Temple in Paris. This year, AKAA brings together 32 galleries from 18 countries. More than half of its exhibitors have been renewed. The fair will offer a more international and selective group of exhibitors. AKAA affirms its identity as an art fair on a human scale and its stature as a commercial and cultural meeting place which allows to discover the breadth and diversity of emerging and established artists from Africa, its diaspora and artists inspired by the continent. Among the numerous artists exhibited we highlight Bili Bidjocka, the leader of AtWork Lab and Corporate Milan, Aida Muluneh our partner in AtWork Chapter 06 Addis Ababa, Monica de Miranda, our partner in AtWork Chapter 08 Lisbon and Franck Fanny, Pèlagie Gbaguidi and Virginia Ryan authors of three amazing notebooks for our collection.
AKE’ Arts and Book Festival
November 14-18, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria
Bringing a creative whirlwind to the rocky hills of Abeokuta, Ake Festival is five days of cultural immersion. 100 Novelists, poets, dancers, actors, illustrators, activists, musicians, artists and thinkers storm the historic city and share their work and their ideas. The fifth edition of Ake Arts and Book Festival will take place at the Arts and Cultural Centre, Kuto, Abeokuta on 14-18 November, 2017. This year’s theme is This F-Word and conversations will focus largely on creative women doing amazing things both on the African continent and beyond. As usual, the Ake Arts and Book Festival aims to showcase the very best of contemporary African literature, poetry, music, art, film and theatre, whilst showcasing the work of the trailblazers.