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El Anatsui: The Only Ghanaian in Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2023

“Earth’s Skin” (2007). Photo Credit | Chester Higgins Jr

Time magazine has released its annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world, and among them is renowned Ghanaian Sculptor, El Anatsui. Honouring individuals who have made a significant impact in various fields such as politics, arts, science, sports and entertainment, El Antsui is featured as the only Ghanaian on the list.

“El Anatsui is one of the most impactful artists of our time. As a sculptor, he shows an incomparable capacity to experiment with his materials, medium, and process. El collects diverse materials, puts them aside in his studio for years, and then returns to them intermittently, until he figures out the right language for inventing completely new sculptural forms. The breathtaking combination of experimental rigor and inspired vision turns such unassuming materials as printer’s plates or liquor-bottle caps into the magnificent constructions and compositions displayed around the world, from a recent solo show in Seoul to his upcoming commission at London’s Tate Modern.

Less public, but just as important, is El’s unflinching generosity of spirit. As his career grew, so has his remarkable propensity to support not just other artists but also individuals, families, and institutions in his community in Nsukka and across Nigeria. And he does all this without fanfare, as if it is only but a life mission. That, for me, is the mark of greatness.” - Chika Okeke Agulu

One of his upcoming projects is the Hyundai Commission for Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall, which will open in October 2023. This will be his first major commission in the UK and a rare opportunity to see his work on a monumental scale. He will create a site-specific installation that responds to the unique architecture and history of the Turbine Hall. The Hyundai Commission is a series of annual commissions by renowned international artists that have included Olafur Eliasson, Ai Weiwei, Kara Walker and Anish Kapoor.

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El Anatsui: The Only Ghanaian in Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2023

April 20, 2023

Art Report Africa

2 min read

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