Clement Emeka Akpang

GIAS Fellow
Period of Stay: 
September 2022 – August 2023
Art History and Architecture
Cross River University of Technology, Nigeria
Project Title: 
Conceptualizing a Global Postcolonial Museology for Artefacts: Decolonizing European Museums and Dewesternizing African Art Scholarship
Project Abstract: 

African decoloniality advocacy is yet to achieve meaningful results because European museums continue to distort African arts by displaying them in suspended animation. Furthermore, the art curriculum in African universities remains dominated by Eurocentric philosophies. Although postcolonial projects have attempted to address this problem, the current emphasis on repatriation and restitution as a mechanism for dismantling European museum hegemony has hindered the untangling of African arts from colonial anthropological framing. This research aims to engage decoloniality from an epistemological standpoint in two perspectives. A) By developing postcolonial museology to restage African art objects in European museums as a global heritage with new universal significance. B) By designing a dewesternized art history curriculum for African universities to delink art theory studies in the continent from European epistemology. The project, which adopts Postcolonialism and Epistemic Contextualism as theoretical frameworks, will contribute to African and global art scholarship and contemporary museum dialogues and practices.