Afrikarticle designed by Ose.

Exploring the African canvas

The arts and cultural industry are of vital importance to the development of a society. The ACI has been quoted as contributed to the economic growth of the UK, South Africa, Nigeria and Japan. How does the ACI allow a people to flourish? One primary example is found in America, particularly Afro-American (20th and 21st century).

These peoples meandered their way into the hearts of the globe’s imagination through their unique cultural footprint. Afro-American culture weaved with RnB, Blues, Hip-Hop (Rap), and an endless barrage of cultural content such as the Migos. Yes. That’s right. Look at that dab. You know what a dab is. And that alone contributes revenue to the US. Through the financial and attentional investment, we all make towards their entertainment sectors. Hollywood, LA, Pizza Hut…Friends??…pfft. We all know these popular trademarked and hugely profitable cultural goldmines which made the world fall into a hypnotic fascination with America. America’s two largest media companies, which are also the world’s’ biggest: Facebook and Google. These two tech giants have given access to an innumerous source of information, especially cultural information. Musical icons, from Luther Vandross to A$AP Rocky, and media personalities like Oprah. Even the Obamas. Barack has his fucking face printed on appropriated church clothes, by Supreme his name graffitied on walls. He’s a fucking folk story that’s generated millions of dollars for the American economy every-time anyone has paid to access content or to provide access to content on him.

Ain’t that some shit.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

Even look at ancient Egypt. Ancient Egypt’s mesmerizing hieroglyphics and pagan worshipping memorials brought in imperialists, invaders and then tourists, through a rigorous and profitable preservation of their ancient ACI. Egypt is now only behind Nigeria in GDP. And do I even need to talk about Nigeria?

Hell yes, nigga.

Nigeria’s aggressive and relentless push of its art, culture, and tradition have seen the country reach international recognition.

This was done primarily, in my opinion, through mass immigration and brain drain. Through this intercontinental transfer of norms and traditions, Nigerians have enabled their spawn to flourish in dynamic environments with influence in the fields of music, i.e Fela Kuti and D’banj, the latter who went on to form a fruitful international relationship with Kanye West. Paving the way for artists like Davido, Wizkid and Rae Sremmurd to bridge a gap, creating new avenues for up-and-coming talents looking to access wider markets and fashion.

[Virgil Abloh with his globally revered brand Off-White]
All these points towards the conclusion that the ACI is integral to developing a society. Even in Ancient Greece, art and culture were celebrated and aided in the development of social ideals of justice and politics which are still used today on the mission for a more understanding and tolerant world.

Blossoming art and cultural industry invoke pride and unity in a common identity, which catalyzes a deeper investment into the country’s nuances. Which can even develop the agricultural sector, as happened in Rwanda or birth a drive to protect and preserve heritage sites, wild parks and even languages, as in Zambia, Kenya and South Africa. Remember that money-generating hypothesis? The thing that I said about Obama? The same thing works when it comes to thinking about Nelson Mandela, Table Mountain, The Sphynx, pyramids and zebras.

go, little guy, go!

Yes, I said zebras (goddamit). Zebras have long been a fascinating thing to tourists who come in their millions to see zebras, lions, crocodiles and other creatures unique to the African safari experience. And what industry do such attractions fall under? You could say tourism, but that’s just the word that people use to mean the commodification of arts and culture.

You guessed it OG Maco. The ACI. The ACI brings vast opportunities to the surrounding society. Through museums, safaris, monuments, ruins, plains, art festivals, artists, musicians, singers.

On a more sombre note Huge Masekela, who recently passed was quoted as believing that African countries need to form serious heritage restoration programs. To reconnect African peoples to their past. Heritage restoration programmes would give Africans a chance to reclaim lost cultures and traditions which may well serve to impassion a fire that’s already spreading, a fire encouraging Africans and African to regain and reconnect with a purer Nubian existence, i.e pre-colonialism. To what was before ‘Africa’. If you know what I mean, if you know, you know. As he noted, some of us can’t even speak any local dialects. I can’t speak Twi fluently. Which breaks my heart but I’m trying to re-learn it, but English comes a lot easier. So, don’t be like me, if you can’t speak your local dialect, try your best to learn it. You’d bring yourself closer to your community, and closer to your culture. But more universally, it will bring us closer to investing in ourselves for ourselves.

Kwame Barning

Kwame is an undergraduate law student in his final year. He is in a constant state of creative evolution, and as a musician his primary choice of medium is words. His topics of interest are often grandoise, "tout le monde" philosophy, covering political, cultural and historical themes.
His life's work is to see the restoration and development of Africa.
He often leaves you with more questions than answers.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Previous Story

Introducing: Dé Advntr

Next Story

She is much more: The Glaring Case Against Child Marriages

Latest from Art