Western Frontiers of African Art

Western Frontiers of African Art

Moyo Okediji


University of Rochester Press



Western Frontiers of African Art navigates the problems and prospects of prometheusis in creative cultural productions. Artists, writers, musicians, and other creative practitioners share icons, ideas, images, and paraphernalia across cultures, mediums, and disciplines in many ways including borrowing, copying, adoption, adaptation, abbreviation, distortion, and even outright pilfering. Their reasons for sharing creative elements range from admiration to subversion, pedagogical innovation, criticism, hegemony, revenge, anger, fear, malice, and even pathology. Once shared these artistic materials become links and crossroads that complicate creativity and culture with prometheusis. But what is prometheusis? How does it work and how is it evaluated? Drawing on the visual arts, this book elaborates on prometheusis as a general theory of cultural exchange, productivity, and analysis. Examples focus on the intersections and frontiers of western modernity and African art.

Moyo Okediji is Director of the Center for Art of Africa and its Diasporas at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of several books on African art.


November 2011
80 colour illustrations
354 pages
9x6 in
Rochester Studies in African History and the Diaspora
ISBN: 9781580463706
Format: Hardback
University of Rochester Press
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Table of Contents

Triangular Landscape: Renaming the Boundaries
Homoerotic African Art: Genital Rites, Blood, and Dark Secrets
Transgressive Pictures: Feminism, Pathology, and Poverty
Gendered Triangulation: Anger, Rage, and Dislocation
Hybrid Body: White Nude, Black Myth
Words and Images: The Meaning of Meaninglessness
Semioptic Equations: The Crossroads of Arrowhead Modernity
Twin Visions: Hybrid Colon and Semicolon
Triangulated Worlds: Western Modernity, African Postcoloniality
Semiographic Hybridity: Writing with Images

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