Museum Of Black Civilizations In African Wants Europe To Return Stolen Artworks




A new museum in Africa that displays artworks from across the African Diaspora opened earlier this month, but it’s missing important pieces that Europe plundered during the colonial era.

Museum Of Black Civilizations In African Wants Europe To Return Stolen Artworks

Senegal’s culture minister wants former colonial powers to return thousands of African art pieces that are in European museums and private collections returned to where they belong, the Associated Press reported on Wednesday.

“It’s entirely logical that Africans should get back their artworks. These works were taken in conditions that were perhaps legitimate at the time but illegitimate today,” Abdou Latif Coulibaly said.

The Museum of Black Civilizations was envisioned in 1966 by former Senegalese President Léopold Sédar Senghor, the West African country’s first head of state when French colonization ended. He died in 2001 before his dream became a reality on Dec. 6 when the museum finally opened its doors in Dakar, the country’s capital.

Museum Of Black Civilizations In African Wants Europe To Return Stolen Artworks

China provided $34 million of the funding that enabled Senegal to open the 150,000-square-foot, circular structure, according to the reports.

It houses “ambitious displays spanning both centuries and continents,”
Artnet News said. The first temporary exhibits include works by artists from Mali and Burkina Faso, as well as from Cuba and Haiti.

One of the exhibitions, “Cradle of Humankind,” looks back to human origins in Africa and features early stone tools. Another one, titled “African Civilizations: Continuous Creation of Humanity,” explores the history of masks in African cultures. Another exhibit, “The Caravan and Caravel,” looks at how African communities in the Americas grew out of the slave trade.

Despite all the celebrations, there’s a sense that a huge portion of African art history is missing. French President Emmanuel Macron opened the door to the possible return of African artworks from France.

Macron commissioned a report that calls for the repatriation of the pieces taken from its colonies, according to the Guardian . He wanted it to begin within five years.

“I cannot accept that a large part of the cultural heritage of several African countries is in France,” Macron said during a 2017 visit to the African country of Burkina Faso. “There are historical explanations for this but there is no valid, lasting and unconditional justification.

Many are also calling on Britain and Germany to follow France’s example, the New York Times reported.

It’s unknown exactly how many artefacts Britain, Germany and France looted from Africa. About 90 percent of Africa’s cultural heritage is housed outside the African continent, according to some estimates.





Uzonna Anele
Anele is a web developer and a Pan-Africanist who believes bad leadership is the only thing keeping Africa from taking its rightful place in the modern world.

Leave a Reply

Subscribe to receive email updates

With a subscription profile, you automatically receive updates without having to return to the website and check for changes

Just In

King Sobhuza II, the Longest-reigning Monarch Ever in Recorded History (1899-1982)

Swaziland King Sobhuza II, KBE is the longest-reigning monarch, having served as monarch for 82 years and 254 days.

The Virginia Killing Act of 1669: the Law That Made It Legal to Kill a Slave

The Virginia casual killing act of 1669 declared that, should a slave be killed as a result of extreme punishment, the master should not face charges for the murder.

The Creation Story of the Akamba People of Kenya

In the beginning, Mulungu the creator is said to have formed a man and a woman in heaven before placing them on a rock in on earth, where it is said that their footprints, as well as the footprints of their animals, can still be seen today.

Bussa’s Rebellion of 1816, the Largest Slave Revolt in Barbadian History

The largest slave rebellion in Barbadian history took place during the Bussa uprising in April 1816. The rebellion takes its name from the African-born...

Top 10 Longest Serving Presidents in Africa, 2022

Equatorial Guinea's president Teodoro Obiang is the longest serving president in Africa and the world. He is closely followed by Cameroons President Paul Biya.

More Articles Like This