EU shipping is temporarily suspended

Africa State of Mind

Contemporary Photography Reimagines a Continent

Ekow Eshun, Lina Iris Viktor


A continent-spanning survey of the most dynamic scenes in contemporary African photography, and an introduction to the creative figures who are making it happen

See Inside


Africa State of Mind gathers together the work of an emergent generation of photographers from across Africa, including both the Maghreb and sub-Saharan Africa. It is both a summation of new photographic practice from the last decade and an exploration of how contemporary photographers from the continent are exploring ideas of ‘Africanness’ to reveal Africa to be a psychological space as much as a physical territory – a state of mind as much as a geographical place.

Dispensing with the western colonial view of Africa in purely geographic or topographic terms, Ekow Eshun presents Africa State of Mind in four thematic parts: Hybrid Cities; Inner Landscapes; Zones of Freedom; and Myth and Memory. Each theme, introduced by a text by Eshun, presents selections of work by a new wave of African photographers who are looking both outward and inward: capturing life among the sprawling cities and multitudinous conurbations of the continent, turning the legacy of the continent’s history into the source of resonant new myths and dreamscapes and exploring questions of gender, sexuality and identity. Each of the photographers seeks to capture the experience of what it means, and how it feels, to live in Africa today.

Read More


'Ekow Eshun celebrates contemporary African photography'

'A mélange of portraiture, landscape and urban photography'
Financial Times

'Africa's changing landscapes are beautifully captured by a new generation of home-grown photographers'

'A celebratory affection for everyday life that does not ignore contested issues of the past and present'
The Eye of Photography

'A kaleidoscopic view of Africa'

'[Celebrates] the collective consciousness of contemporary African photography'

Royal Photographic Society Journal

Creative Review

'A wide-ranging compendium of work'
The World of Interiors

'[A] stylish survey of work by a new generation of photographers … It’s a break from visions of Africa seen through Western eyes'

'A thrilling view of a complex, beautiful place'
Times Luxx

'[A] stimulating survey'
Sunday Telegraph

Read More

Product Information

Book Details

Format: PLC

Size: 28.0 x 22.3 cm

Extent: 272 pp

Illustrations: 276

Publication date: 26 March 2020

ISBN: 9780500545164

Contents List

Introduction • 1. Hybrid City • 2. Inner Landscapes • 3. Zones of Freedom • 4. Magic & Memory

The Photographers

Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou
Leila Alaoui
Kader Attia
Atong Atem
Shiraz Bayjoo
Girma Berta
Jodi Bieber
Guillaume Bonn
Filipe Branquinho
Edson Chagas
Kudzanai Chiurai
Jabulani Dhlamini
Omar Victor Diop
Yagazie Emezi
Andrew Esiebo
Lalla Essaydi
Hicham Gardaf
Francois-Xavier Gbre
Maïmouna Guerresi
Eric Gyamfi
Kiluanji Kia Henda
Pieter Hugo
Delio Jasse
Lebohang Kganye
Phumzile Khanyile
Namsa Leuba
Michael Macgarry
Osborne Macharia
Sabelo Mlangeni
Mohau Modisakeng
Zanele Muholi
Youssef Nabil
Jehad Nga
Nobukho Nqaba
Musa N. Nxumalo
Emeka Okereke
Uche Okpa-Iroha
George Osodi
Ruth Ossai
Dawit L Petros
Athi-Patra Ruga
Zina Saro-Wiwa
Thabiso Sekgala
Michael Tsegaye
Nontisikelelo Veleko
Lina Iris Viktor
Zakaria Wakrim
Alexia Webster
Kyle Weeks

About the Author

Ekow Eshun is a writer, curator, journalist and broadcaster based in London, whose writing has appeared in publications including The New York Times, the Financial Times, the Guardian and Vogue. Director of the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, from 2005 to 2010, and a frequent contributor to BBC radio and television programmes, his previous books include Black Gold of the Sun: Searching for Home in England and Africa, published in 2005.