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(Born in 1944, Anyako, Ghana. Lives and works in Nsukka, Nigeria, where he was Professor of Sculpture at the University of Nigeria.)
El Anatsui has made a major contribution to contemporary art. Masterfully using mixed-media throughout his forty-year career as both Sculpture and teacher, Anatsui has addressed a wide range of historical, political, and social concerns. This legendary artist has gained worldwide recognition since the early 2000s, for his scintillating, gigantic tapestry wall hangings, which are mostly composed of brightly coloured metals and the caps of liquor bottles, which Anatsui and his team link together with wire copper. His monumental wall-hanging TSIATSIA - searching for connection (2013) - clad the facade of the Royal Academy of Arts, London, in 2013, and his sculptures have been collected by major international museums, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Centre Pompidou, Paris; the British Museum, London, and many other prestigious institutions.
In 2014, he was made an Honorary Royal Academician as well as being elected into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. A year later at the 56th International Art Exhibition of the Biennale di Venezia, El Anatsui was awarded a Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement, before receiving an Honorary Doctorate from Harvard University in 2016.
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