Share, click, repost, send. These are the daily habits of thousands of African’s online. Digital culture has permeated into our daily lives, connecting us to regions, history and people that were otherwise inaccessible.
This digital world is a playground for artists to not only experiment with digital technology but to investigate the spaces between the past and the present, analogue and digital, Africa and beyond. African digital collage is the a growing form of art that utilizes technology to produce a range of artworks that incorporate digital video, animation, photography, animated gif’s and digital photo manipulation.
ALTERNATIVE REPRESENTATION OF AFRICA
As new stories about Africa emerge, the information age has disassembled what we thought we knew about Africa, offering up alternative stories and visual representations of this large and diverse continent. The internet has invited Africa to participate in redefining Africa’s visual aesthetic. Africa is utilizing the digital space to repost, remix, recreate and share new images and visual representations of Africa.
Digital Artist, Nkiru Oparah’s love for collage is based on this idea of transformation. Oparah work allows him to recreate his own visual notions of Africa.
PLAYGROUND BETWEEN THE PAST AND PRESENT
While the African digital arena expands, African digital collagists have taken to the past using ethnographic images of Africa to recreate images of Africa from pre and post colonial eras. Introducing an alternative narrative, websites such as the Nigerian Nostalgia Project have become a popular online resources for collagists to find historical materials photographs, videos, soundclips and graphic art.
African digital collage projects often recreate ethnographic images of Africa from the pre and post colonial era. Inviting an alternative narrative to the image of Africa we think we know.
Ethnographic images like the ones used by digital artist Hillary Faye utilize iconic images and graphic elements as a basis of experimentation for animated gifs. The use of animated gif’s provides a way for these artists to play with concepts of time, drawing the audience into abstract moments in time.