<h2>HYUNDAI COMMISSION.<br><em>EL ANATSUI: BEHIND THE RED MOON</em> FOR TATE MODERN’S TURBINE HALL.</h2>
10 October, 2023 – 14 April, 2024
Tate Modern, London<strong>El Anatsui</strong> in front of <em>TSIATSIA - searching for connection</em>, 2013.
Aluminium (bottle-tops, printing plates, roofing
sheets) and copper wire, 15.6 x 25 m 
at the Royal Academy of Arts, 2013.<h2>EL ANATSUI: TIMESPACE CATALOGUE<br>Now available in our online store</h2>
40 pages - £10 (+P&P)<strong>El Anatsui</strong>, <em>Skylines</em>, 2008. Aluminium and copper wire, 300 x 825 cm.

EL ANATSUI

El Anatsui in front of TSIATSIA - searching for connection, 2013. Aluminium (bottle-tops, printing plates, roofing sheets) and copper wire, 15.6 x 25 m.
At the Royal Academy of Arts, 2013.
Photo: © Jonathan Greet, 2013.
El Anatsui, Focus, 2015.
Aluminium and copper wire, 284 x 304 cm.


An alumnus of the College of Art, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana, El Anatsui has made a major contribution to contemporary art. Throughout a long-lasting and distinguished career as both sculptor and teacher - he was Professor of Sculpture and Departmental Head at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka – El Anatsui has addressed a vast range of social, political and historical concerns, and embraced an equally diverse range of media and processes. His sculptures have been collected by major international museums, such as the British Museum, London; the Centre Pompidou, Paris; the De Young Museum, San Francisco; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Guggenheim, Abu Dhabi; Osaka Foundation of Culture, Osaka; Museum of Modern Art, New York and many other prestigious institutions. October Gallery first exhibited his work in 1993.

His installations have provoked wide international attention in recent years, with institutions and audiences fascinated by his sumptuous, mesmerising works made from thousands of aluminium bottle tops. During the 52nd Venice Biennale, in 2007, he transformed the façade of the Palazzo Fortuny by draping it in a shimmering bottle top sculpture, Fresh and Fading Memories. In 2010, two major touring shows of his work opened on opposite sides of the world; El Anatsui: When I Last Wrote to You About Africa at the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Canada (organised by the Museum for African Art, New York) and A Fateful Journey: Africa in the Works of El Anatsui at the National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. As part of the 2012 Paris Triennale, he transformed the entire façade of Le Palais Galliera, formerly known as the Musée de la Mode de la Ville de Paris, with his striking work, Broken Bridge. In 2013, the Brooklyn Museum, New York, exhibited the touring solo exhibition, Gravity and Grace: Monumental Works by El Anatsui and the Royal Academy of Arts, London, presented the artist with the prestigious Charles Wollaston Award for his work, TSIATSIA – searching for connection, 2013, which covered the entire façade of the RA building. The major survey exhibition Five Decades, which in 2015 premiered at The School (Jack Shainman), Kinderhook, New York, toured to Carriageworks (in association with Sydney Festival), Sydney, Australia, in 2016. A major new work Kindred Viewpoints enveloped the façade of El Badi Palace during the 2016 Marrakech Biennale. In 2019, the monumental wall-hanging TSIATSIA – searching for connection, was installed in the atrium of Zeitz MOCAA, Cape Town. The same year, the largest survey exhibition of El Anatsui’s work to date Triumphant Scale was presented at the Haus der Kunst, Munich Germany, (the exhibition toured to Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, 2019; and Kunstmuseum Bern, 2020) and the artist’s works were featured in Ghana's first National Pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale. In 2020, the exhibition In Search of Freedom was shown at the Conciergerie, Paris. The central installation in the exhibition was a collaboration between the artist and Factum Arte.

In 2014, El Anatsui was made an Honorary Royal Academician as well as elected into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2015, he was awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 56th International Art Exhibition of the Biennale di Venezia - All the World’s Futures and in 2016, he received an Honorary Doctorate from Harvard University. In 2017, he was honoured with the Praemium Imperiale Award for Sculpture, the Japan Art Association, Tokyo, Japan.

In an interview with October Gallery, El Anatsui noted, “The amazing thing about working with these metallic ‘fabrics’ is that the poverty of the materials used in no way precludes the telling of rich and wonderful stories."

For sales enquiries please contact: Or call + 44 (0)20 7242 7367
View below for career highlights and works for sale by the artist.


HYUNDAI COMMISSION. EL ANATSUI: BEHIND THE RED MOON FOR TATE MODERN’S TURBINE HALL.
Hyundai Commission. El Anatsui: Behind the Red Moon, Installation View.
Photo © Tate (Joe Humphrys)
HYUNDAI COMMISSION. EL ANATSUI: BEHIND THE RED MOON FOR TATE MODERN’S TURBINE HALL.
10 October, 2023 – 14 April, 2024
Tate Modern, London
Congratulations to El Anatsui! We are delighted that Tate Modern unveils a monumental sculptural installation created by the internationally acclaimed Ghanaian artist.

The Hyundai Commission: El Anatsui: Behind the Red Moon is staged in three acts which visitors are invited to move between. The first hanging, titled The Red Moon, resembles the majestic sail of a ship billowing out in the wind, announcing the beginning of a journey across the Atlantic Ocean. Red liquor bottle-tops form the outline of a red moon, or ‘blood moon’, as it appears during a lunar eclipse.

The second sculpture, , is composed of many individual layers that evoke human figures suspended in a restless state. The ethereal appearance of these figures is achieved using thin bottle-top seals wired together to create a net-like material. When viewed from a particular vantage point, these scattered shapes come together into a single circular form of the Earth.

In Anatsui’s final hanging, The Wall, a monumental black sheet of metal cloth stretches from floor to ceiling. At its base, pools of bottle tops rise from the ground in the form of crashing waves and rocky peaks. Behind its black surface, a delicate structure of shimmering silver is revealed, covered in a mosaic of multi-coloured pieces. This combination of lines and waves, blackness and technicolour, echoes the collision of global cultures and hybrid identities that Anatsui invites us to consider throughout his work.

 

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS



 

SELECTED WORKS





 

MEDIA





 

EL ANATSUI

Born 1944, Anyako, Ghana. Lives and works in West Africa and locations worldwide.
Selected Solo Exhibitions
2024   Entangled Pasts, 1768 – Now: Art, Colonialism and Change, Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK
2023-2024   Hyundai Commission: El Anatsui, Tate Modern, London, United Kingdom
2023   El Anatsui: TimeSpace, October Gallery, London, United Kingdom
2022-2023   El Anatsui: Day After Night, Barakat Contemporary, Seoul, South Korea
2022   El Anatsui: Freedom, Goodman Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
El Anatsui: Shard Song, Efie Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
2021   El Anatsui: En quête de liberté (In quest of freedom), Conciergerie, Paris, France
2020   Focus on El Anatsui, October Gallery, London, United Kingdom
2019-2020   El Anatsui: Triumphant Scale, Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany; Mathaf, Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, Qatar; Kunstmuseum Bern, Bern, Switzerland
2019   Material Wonder, October Gallery, London, UK
El Anatsui: Triumphant Scale, Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany 
El Anatsui: Recent Works (selected prints), Zane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
2018   El Anatsui – Meyina, Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
Ofrendas, Detroit Institute of Arts, Michigan, USA
2017   Proximately, Axel Vervoordt Gallery, Wijnegem, Belgium
Meyina, Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
El Anatsui: Topology of Generosity, Barakat Gallery, Seoul, South Korea
Benchmarks: New Prints by El Anatsui, October Gallery, London, UK
The Beginning and the End, Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Belgium
2016   El Anatsui: Meyina, Prince Claus Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
El Anatsui: New Works, October Gallery, London, UK
El Anatsui; Five Decades, Carriageworks, Sydney Festival 2016, Sydney, Australia
Afrikas Stjerne: Monumentale vaerker af El Anatsui (Star of Africa – Monumental works by El Anatsui), Trapholt Museum for Moderne Kunst, South Jutland, Denmark 
2015   El Anatsui, October Gallery, London, UK
El Anatsui: Five Decades, Jack Shainman Gallery - The School, Kinderhook, New York, USA
El Anatsui: Of Dzi, Kunstbanken Hedmark Kunstsenter, Hamar, Norway
El Anatsui, Le Fenil Gallery, domain du Chaumont-sur-Loire, France
2014   El Anatsui – Theory of Se, Axel Vervoordt Gallery, Hong Kong
El Anatsui: Playing with Chance, Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos, Nigeria
El Anatsui: New Worlds, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts, USA
El Anatsui: Trains of Thought, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, USA
El Anatsui, Mnuchin Gallery, New York, USA
2012 - 2015   Gravity and Grace: Monumental Works by El Anatsui, Akron Art Museum, Akron, Ohio; Brooklyn Museum, New York; Des Moines Art Center, Iowa; Bass Museum of Art, Miami, USA; Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, USA
2012-2013   Broken Bridge II, the High Line, New York, USA
2012   Pot of Wisdom, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, USA
Stitch in Time, Axel Vervoordt Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium
2011   El Anatsui, Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA
2010-2012   El Anatsui: When I Last Wrote To You About Africa, organised by the Museum for African Art, New York, USA;  Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Canada; Davis Museum, Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts; Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas, Austin; North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, North Carolina; Denver Art Museum, Colorado; University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
2010-2011   A Fateful Journey, National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka; The Museum of Modern Art, Hayama; Tsuruoka Art Forum, Tsuruoka Art; The Museum of Modern Art, Saitama, Japan
2010   Gli, Rice University Art Gallery, Houston, Texas, USA
El Anatsui, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, USA
2009   El Anatsui, Belger Arts Center, Kansas City, Missouri, USA 
Process and Project, BRIC Rotunda Gallery, Brooklyn, New York, USA
2008   Earth Growing Roots, San Diego State University Art Gallery, San Diego, USA 
Zebra Crossing, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, USA
2006   Asi, David Krut Projects, New York, USA, in collaboration with October Gallery, London, UK
Nyekor, Spazio Rossana Orlandi, Milan, Italy, in collaboration with October Gallery, London, UK
2005   Danudo: Recent Sculptures of El Anatsui, Skoto Gallery in collaboration with Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York, USA
2003-2008   El Anatsui: Gawu, Oriel Mostyn Gallery, Llandudno, Wales, UK; Model Arts & Niland Gallery, Sligo, Ireland; Gallery Oldham, Oldham; October Gallery, London; Djanogly Art Gallery, University of Nottingham, UK; Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville, Florida; Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire; Fowler Museum, University of California, Los Angeles; University of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson; The National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
2002   New Works, October Gallery, London, UK
1998   A Sculpted History of Africa, October Gallery, London, UK
1997   Hakpa, French Cultural Centre, Lagos, Nigeria
1995   El Anatsui: Sculptures and Reliefs, October Gallery, London, UK
1991   Old and New: An Exhibition of Sculpture in Assorted Wood, National Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
1987   Venovize: Ceramic Sculpture by El Anatsui, Faculty of Art and Design Gallery, Cornwall College, Redruth, UK
Pieces of Wood: An Exhibition of Mural Sculpture, The Franco-German Auditorium, Lagos, Nigeria
1982   Sculptures, Photographs, Drawings, Goethe-Institut, Lagos, Nigeria
1980   Wood Carvings, Cummington Community of Arts, Cummington, Massachusetts, USA
1979   Broken Pots: Sculpture by El Anatsui, British Council, Enugu, Nigeria; Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
1976   Wooden Wall Plaques, Asele Art Gallery, Nsukka, Nigeria
Selected Group Exhibitions
2022-2023   Journeys Through the Tate Collection: The Port and Migrations, Tate Liverpool, Liverpool, UK
2022   Nomadic Resonance, October Gallery, London, UK
Threading the Needle, The Church, Sag Harnour, New York, USA
Stressed World, The School, Jack Shainman Gallery, Kinderhook New York, USA
Revival: Materials and Monumental Forms, ICA Watershed, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
The Clowes Pavillion Reimagined, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Africa, Imagined: Reflections on Mondern and Contemporary Art, Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA
2021-22    Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London
Diaspora at Home, KADIST, Paris, France
The Slipstream: Reflection, Resilience, and Resistance in the Art of Our Time, Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, New York, USA
New Light: Encounters and Collections, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, MA
Seeing the Invisible, Augmented Reality Exhibition, Outset Contemporary Art Fund, Jerusalem Botanical Gardens, appearing simultaneously in 12 botanical gardens across the world.
2021    Socle du Monde Biennale, St john's Church, Herning, Denmark
Duende At Projects: THREADS, Zwartzusters Monastery, Antwerp, Belgium
Tomorrow is a Different Day, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Textures: A Print and Fiber Showcase, Zane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
PORTALS, NEON, Athens, Greece
Invisible Sun, The Broad, Los Angeles, California, USA
Gold and Magic, ARKEN Museum for Moderne Kunts, Denmark
First Look: Recent Acquisitions & Rarely Seen Gems, MW Gallery, Flint, Michigan, USA
2020-2021    Second Careers: Two Tributaries in African Art, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, Ohio, USA
Royal Academy Summe Exhibition: Reclaiming Magic, Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK
Black Stories, Des Moines Art Centre, Des Moines, Iowa, USA
Grace Before Jones: Camera. Disco. Studio, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK
Making the Met, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA
Small World Real World, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
2020    Atmospheres; Artists of the Transvangarde, October Gallery, London, UK
Re-Materialize, Arthur Ross Gallery, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
New Beginnings: the Epoch of African Art, Pure Lagos Gallery, Norfolk, Virginia, USA
Myths, Martyrs, Monsters and Masterpieces , Everard Read Gallery, Franschhoek, South Africa
Now Sculpture 2020, Nigerian National Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
2019   Prête-moi ton rêve, Casablanca, Morocco. Travelled to: Dakar, Abidjan, Lagos, Addis Ababa, Cape Town and Marrakech
Ghana Freedom, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
The Moon, Royal Museums Greenwich, London, UK
Lend Me Your Dreams, Fondation pour le Développement de la Culture Contemporaine Africaine, Casablanca, Morocco
Magdalene Odundo: The Shape of Things, Hepworth Wakefield Gallery, Wakefield, UK, travelling to the Sainsbury Centre, Norwich, UK
Dream No Small Dream: Celebrating 40 Years of the Transvangarde, October Gallery, London, UK
South South / Between Land and Sea: I don't understand what you're talking about, but I know what you mean, Goodman Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
A National Treasure: Fred Meijer, His Collection and Legacy, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, USA
I've grown roses in this garden of mine, Goodman Gallery, London, UK
2018   International Contemporary Art Exhibition, Yerevan, Armenia
0.10 Reloaded Avantgarde, Galerie Sabine Knust, Munich, Germany
Domestic Alien, Gazelli Art House, Baku, Azerbaijan
Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London, UK
Transvangarde, October Gallery, London, UK
Sedimentations: Assemblage as Social Repair, The 8th Floor, New York, USA
Common Threads: Weaving Stories Across Time, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, USA
Carnegie International, Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, USA
MAD Collects: The Future of Craft Part 1, Museum of Arts and Design, New York, USA
Parking on Pavement, Jack Shainman Gallery: The School, New York, USA
2017   Masterpiece, The Royal Hospital Chelsea, London, UK
Afriques Capitales: Cape of Good Hope Here We Come, Lille 3000, Lille, France
La Terra Inquieta/The Restless Earth, Fondazione Nicola Trussardi, Milan, Italy
Three Dimensions: Modern & Contemporary Approaches to Relief and Sculpture, Acquavella Galleries, New York, USA
A Journey. El Anatsui, Anish Kapoor, Jannis Kounellis, Kewenig Galerie, Berlin, Germany
2016   Marrakech Biennale 6; Not New Now, Marrakech, Morocco (represented by October Gallery)
The Woven Arc, Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African and African American Art, Hutchins Center, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
Festival Internationale des Jardins, Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire, France
El Anatsui, Hilla and Bernd Becher, Maya Lin: Of a Different Nature, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York
Summer Exhibition 2016, Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK
2015   Africa Africans, Museu Afro Brazil, São Paulo, Brazil
Field, Road, Cloud: Art and Africa, Anna K. Meredith Gallery, Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, Iowa, USA
Embracing Space and Color: Art On & Off the Wall, Vero Beach Museum of Art, USA
Meet Me Halfway: Selections from the Anita Reiner Collection, Cristin Tierney Gallery, New York, USA
Re:Purposed, The John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art, State Art Museum of Florida, Florida State University, Sarasota, Florida, USA
Piece Work, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
Summer Exhibition 2015, Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK
Atopolis, Wiels in collaboration with Mons 2015, Manège de Sury, Mons, Belgium
PROPORTIO, Palazzo Fortuny, Venice, Italy
2014   Mise En Scène, The School,Jack Shainman Gallery, Kinderhook, NY, USA
The Art of Our Time: Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Collections, Guggenheim Bilbao, Spain
2013   245th Summer Exhibition, installation of sculpture on the façade of the Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK  
ArtZuid 2013, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Masters of the Transvangarde, October Gallery, London, UK
Earth Matters: Land as Material and Metaphor in the Arts of Africa, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
2012   El Gran Sur, 1st Montevideo Biennial, Montevideo, Uruguay
All Our Relations, 18th Biennale of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Intense Proximity,Paris Triennial 2012, Palais de Tokyo/ Musée Galliera, Paris, France
African Cosmos: Stellar Art, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
Dialogues, Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan
We Face Forward, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester, UK
2011-12   Environment and Object: Recent African Art, Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College, New York; Anderson Gallery, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond; Middlebury College Museum of Art, Middlebury, Vermont, USA
Architectural Environments for Tomorrow: New Spatial Practices in Architecture and Art, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, Tokyo University of the Arts, Tokyo, Japan
2011   The World Belongs to You, Palazzo Grassi, Venice, Italy
ARS 11, Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, Helsinki, Finland
Hunters and Gatherers: The Art of Assemblage, Sotheby’s, New York, USA
The Splendour of Truth, The Beauty of Charity, The Vatican, Rome, Italy
2010   Who Knows Tomorrow, Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany
Human Rites, Bass Museum of Art, Miami Beach, Florida, USA
A Collective Diary, an African Contemporary Journey, Herzilya Museum of Contemporary Art, Herzilya, Israel
2009   Against Exclusion, 3rd Moscow Biennale, Moscow, Russia
Intramoenia Extra Art, Castelli di Puglia, Barletta Castle, Barletta, Italy
Chance Encounters: Seven Contemporary African Artists, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai, India
Transvangarde: Leading Contemporary Artists, October Gallery, London, UK
Confines Extremos. Confines Urbanos, Institut Valencia D’Art Modern, Valencia, Spain
Off the Grid, Belger Arts Center, Kansas City, Missouri, USA
Homecoming, Artists Alliance Gallery, Accra, Ghana
Promoter-of- Nigerian-Art Series, Goethe Institute, Lagos, Nigeria
Embrace! Denver Art Museum, Colorado, USA
2008   Second Lives: Remixing the Ordinary, Museum for Arts and Design, New York, USA
The Poetics of Cloth: African Textiles, Grey Art Gallery, New York, USA
The Essential Art of African Textiles: Design Without End, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA
Second Lives: Remixing the Ordinary, Museum for Arts and Design, New York, USA
World Histories, Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, Iowa, USA
Angaza Afrika: African Art Now, October Gallery, London, UK
Recycling: The Whole House, Kunstbanken Hedmark Kunstsenter, Hamar, Norway
Juego Africano de lo Contemporáneo: Pre-figuraciones Postcoloniales, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Unión Fenosa (MACUF), A Coruña, Spain
Prospect.1 New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Sonsbeek 2008: Grandeur, Sonsbeek Park, Arnhem, The Netherlands
2007   Artempo – Where Art Becomes Time, Palazzo Fortuny, Venice, Italy
Think with the Senses, Feel with the Mind: Art in the Present Tense, Arsenale, 52nd Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
Uncomfortable Truths: The Shadow of Slave Trading on Contemporary Art, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK
Tapping Currents: Contemporary African Art and the Diaspora, The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri, USA
Un/Fair Trade: The Art of Justice, Neue Galerie, Graz; Landesmuseum Joanneum, Styria, Austria
From Courage to Freedom, October Gallery, London, UK
Living Masters, Terra Culture, Lagos, Nigeria
The Boys Craft, Haifa Museum of Art, Haifa, Israel
Still Life: Art, Ecology, and the Politics of Change, 8th Sharjah Biennial, UAE
2006-11   The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama, UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History, Los Angeles, California; Loyola University Museum of Art, Chicago, Illinois; Rubin Museum of Art, New York; Visual Arts Gallery, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, California, USA; Hillside Terrace Galleries, Daikanyama, Tokyo, Japan; Fundación Canal, Madrid, Spain; The Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum, Florida International University, Miami, Florida, USA; Brukenthal National Museum, Sibiu, Romania; Nobel Museum, Stockholm, Sweden; San Antonio Museum of Art, Texas, USA 
2006   Altered, Stitched and Gathered, MoMA PS1, New York, USA
DAK’ART 2006, 7th Biennale of African Art, Dakar, Senegal
-poiesis, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, USA 
Europe-Afrique: Regards Croisés, Ateliers des Tanneurs, Brussels, Belgium
Black Panther Rank and File, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, USA
Primitivsm Revisited: After the End of an Idea, Sean Kelly Gallery, New York, USA
Expanding Africa: New Art, New Directions, Newark Museum, Newark, New Jersey, USA
Body of Evidence, National Museum of African Art, Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
2005   In the Making: Materials and Process, Michael Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
Out There, Sainsbury Centre for the Visual Arts, Norwich, UK
AKA . . . of Age 2005, Maison de France, Lagos, Nigeria
De Young Museum, San Francisco, USA
2004-7   Afrika Remix, Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany; Hayward Gallery, London, UK; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan; Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden; Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
2004   A Grain of Dust, A Drop of Water, 5th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea
Intelligence Now! October Gallery, London, UK
2003   Africa Informs, October Gallery, London, UK
Biennale of Ceramics in Contemporary Art, Villa Groppallo, Vado Ligure, Italy
Transfer(t)s, Palais de Beaux Arts, Brussels, Belgium
Homage to Asele, National Museum Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria
Selected Works, Skoto Gallery, New York, USA
2002   The Independent, Liverpool Biennial of Contemporary Art, Liverpool, UK
2001-02   The Happy Face of Globalization, 1st Albissola Ceramics Biennale, Albissola, Italy; Musée Ariana, Geneva, Switzerland
2001   El Tiempo de Africa, Centro Atlantico Arte Moderno, Las Palmas, Canary Islands; Consejería de Cultura de Comunidad, Madrid, Spain 
Encounters with the Contemporary, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
Africas: The Artist and the City, Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB), Barcelona, Spain
News from the Front, October Gallery, London, UK
Jazz and Visual Improvisations, Katonah Museum of Art, Katonah, New York, USA
Ebony Soliloquy: A Five Year Retrospective (1996–2001), Stella Jones Gallery, New Orleans, USA
Messagers de la Terre, Rur’Art– Espace d’Art Contemporain d’Lycée Agricole Xavier Bernard, Rouille, France
1999   New Colours From Old Worlds, October Gallery, London, UK
The Transvangarde, October Gallery, London, UK
Les Champs de la Sculpture, Champs Elysées, Paris, France
Contemporary Art from West Africa, October Gallery, London, UK
1998   7 Triennale der Kleineplastik, Stuttgart, Germany
9th Osaka Sculpture Triennale, Osaka, Japan
Riddle of the Spirits - Twelve African Artists, Skoto Gallery, New York, USA
1997   The Poetics of Line: Seven Artists of the Nsukka Group, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C., USA
Free Form and Precision, Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York, USA
    Container ’96: Art Across Oceans, Langelinie, Copenhagen, Denmark
Transvangarde, October Gallery, London, UK
Images of Africa, Torpedohallen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Africana, Sala 1, Rome, Italy
Transforms, October Gallery, London, UK
Group Exhibition, Avant-Garde Gallery, Kaduna, Nigeria
El Anatsui & Tesfaye Tessema, Contemporary African Gallery, New York, USA
El Anatsui & Sol Le Witt, Skoto Gallery, New York, USA
1995-96   An Inside Story - African Art of our Time, Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo; Tokushima Modern Art Museum, Tokushima; Himeji City Museum of Arts, Himeji; Koriyama City Museum of Art, Koriyama; Marugame Inokuma-Genichiro Museum of Contemporary Art (MIMOCA), Marugame; Museum of Fine Arts, Gifu, Japan
1995   AKA ’95, Bona Gallery, Enugu; Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
Contemporary African Art, World Intellectual Property Organisation Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland
6th Osaka Sculpture Triennale, Osaka, Japan
Seven Stories about Modern Art in Africa, Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK; Malmö Konsthall, Malmö, Sweden
Configura 2, Erfurt, Germany
The Right to Hope, Johannesburg Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa; touring to Cairo; Amman; Gaza; Jerusalem; Tel Aviv
Africus, 1st Johannesburg Biennale, Johannesburg, South Africa
Uli Art– Master Works, Skoto Gallery, NY, USA
1994   Arte/ Sociedad/ Reflexion, 5th Havana Biennale, Havana, Cuba
AKA ’94, Bona Gallery, Enugu; Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
1993   New Currents ’93 - Avant-Garde Nigerian Art, Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
Six African Artists, October Gallery, London, UK
AKA ’93, Bona Gallery, Enugu; Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
1992   Arte Amazonas, Modern Art Museum, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; traveled as: Klima Global to Staatliche Kunalle, Berlin; Ludwig Forum, Aachen, Germany
AKA ’92, Bona Gallery, Enugu and Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria
Begegnung mit den Anderen, University of Kassel, Kassel, Germany
1991   El Desafi de Colonization, 4th Havana Biennale, Havana, Cuba
South of the World, Galleria d’Arte Contemporanea, Marsala, Italy
AKA ’91, Bona Gallery, Enugu; Goethe-Institut, Lagos, Nigeria
Works by a Group of African Artists, The World Bank Art Society Gallery, World Bank Headquarters, Washington D.C., USA
The Sculptor’s Guild of Nigeria Inaugural Exhibition, Murtala Mohammed Park, Enugu, Nigeria
1990   Five Contemporary African Artists, 44th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
The Calabash 1st Art Exhibition, The Calabash, Lagos, Nigeria
AKA ’90, The Presidential Hotel, Enugu; Goethe-Insitut, Lagos, Nigeria
Achebe Celebration Exhibition, Continuing Education Centre, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
Contemporary African Artists: Changing Tradition, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; Afro-American Historical and Cultural Museum, Philadelphia; Chicago Public Library Cultural Centre, Chicago; Washington Project for the Arts, Washington D.C.; Museum of the National Center of African-American Artists, Boston, USA
1989   Zeitgenössische Nigerianische Kunst, Bonn, Bocholt and Mönchengladbach, Germany
1988   Walls and Gates - El Anatsui & Liz Willis, Avant-Garde Gallery, Kaduna, Nigeria
Thoughts and Processes - El Anatsui & Ndubisi Onah, The Italian Cultural Institute, Lagos, Nigeria
AKA ’88, Nigerian Union of Journalists’ Press Centre, Enugu; Contemporary Art Gallery, Institute of African Studies, Nsukka; National Gallery of Crafts and Design, Lagos, Nigeria
1987   AKA ’87, The Presidential Hotel, Enugu; National Gallery of Crafts and Design, Lagos, Nigeria
Original Prints from the 3rd Nsukka Workshop, University of Nigeria, Nsukka and Goethe-Institut, Lagos, Nigeria
1986   AKA ’86 -  Inaugural Exhibition of the AKA Circle of Artists, the French Centre, Enugu and Goethe-Institut, Lagos, Nigeria
Nigerian-German Prints, University of Nigeria, Nsukka; Franco-German Auditorium, Lagos, Nigeria
1983   Four Contemporary African Artists, Mintec Gallery, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
1982   Okike 10th Anniversary Exhibition, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
1981   Drawing on the World, Billingham Art Gallery, Billingham; Middlesborough Art Gallery, Middlesborough and the House of Commons Gallery, London, UK
1979   Christian Arts in Nigeria, Holy Trinity Cathedral Hall, Onitsha, Nigeria
The Nsukka School, Art Gallery of the Rivers State Council for Arts and Culture, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
1975   Fabric Wall Hangings, Burnt Wooden Wall Plaques, The Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
1974   Tekarts Expo 5, National Arts Centre, Accra; Specialist Training College, Winneba, Ghana
1969-70   Ghana National Collection, National Arts Centre, Accra, Ghana; National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
Prizes/Awards
2017    Brandywine Workshop and Archives Lifetime Achievement Award, Philadelphia, PA
    Lorenzo il Magnifico Lifetime Achievement Award, 11th Florence Biennale, Florence, Italy    
    Praemium Imperiale Award for Sculpture, Japan
2015    Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement of the 56th International Art Exhibition of the Biennale di Venezia – All the World’s Futures, Venice, Italy
2013    Charles Wollaston Award, 245th Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London
2000    Member, International Selection Committee, Dakar Biennale
2000    Founding Member & Fellow, Forum for African ArtsCollections (Public)
1999   Publics' Prize, 7th Triennale der Kleinplastik, Stuttgart
1998   Bronze Prize, 9th Osaka Triennale Sculpture
1995   Kansai Telecasting Corporation Prize, Osaka Triennale (Sculpture), Japan
1991   Founding Member, Pan-African Circle of Artist (PACA)
1990  

Honourable Mention (joint), 44th Venice Biennale, Italy

Selected Large Scale Public Installations
2019   Second Wave, façade of Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany
2018   Three Angles, façade of Carnegie Museum of Art (CMOA), Pittsburgh, USA
2016   Kindred Viewpoints, façade of El Badi Palace, Marrakesh, Morocco
2013   TSIA TSIA - searching for connection, façade of Royal Academy of Arts, London, United Kingdom
    Broken Bridge II, High Line, New York, USA
    Drying Towel and Pants, ArtZuid 2013, Amsterdam, Netherlands
2012   Broken Bridge I, façade of Musée Galliera, Paris, France
2010   Ozone Layer and Yam Mound, façade of Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany
2008   The Big Art Project, Big 4, Channel 4, London, United Kingdom
2007   Fresh and Fading Memories, façade of Palazzo Fortuny, Venice, Italy
2000   Ancient Wall, Champs Elysées, Champs de la Sculpture, Paris, France
Selected Honours & Awards
2023   TIME100: The Most Influential People of 2023
2020   Skowhegan Medal for Sculpture, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine
2017   Praemium Imperiale Award for Sculpture, The Japan Art Association, Tokyo
    Lorenzo il Magnifico Lifetime Achievement Award, XIth Florence Biennale, Florence
    Brandywine Workshop and Archives Lifetime Achievement Award, Brandywine Workshop, Philadelphia
    Rees Visionary Award, AMREF Health Africa ArtBall, New York City
2016   Honorary Doctor of Arts, 365th Commencement Ceremony, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
    Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts (DFA), 2016 graduation ceremonies, The University of Cape Town (UCT)
2015   Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement, 56th International Art Exhibition of the Biennale di Venezia — All the World’s Futures, Venice
2014   Elected Honorary Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, MA
    Elected Honorary Academician, Royal Academy of Arts, London
    2nd Best Monographic Museum Show in New York category, AICA-USA, “Gravity and Grace: Works by El Anatsui”, Brooklyn Museum, New York
2013   Charles Wollaston Award, Royal Academy of Arts, London
2009   30th Anniversary Award, Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington, D.C.
    Prince Claus Award, Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development, Lagos
2008   Visionaries Award, Museum of Art and Design, New York
1999   Public’s Prize, 7th Small-Scale Sculpture Triennial, Stuttgart, Germany
1998   Bronze Prize, 9th Sculpture Triennial, Osaka
1995   Kansai Telecasting Corporation Prize, 3rd Sculpture Triennial, Osaka
1990   Honourable Mention, 44th Venice Biennale, Venice
Public Collections

African Studies Gallery, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
Akron Art Museum, Akron, Ohio, USA
Asele Institute, Nimo, Nigeria
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Seattle, Washington, USA
The Blanton Museum, University of Texas, Austin, Texas, USA
The British Museum, London, UK
The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, New York, USA
The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington D.C., USA
Centre Georges Pomipdou, Paris, France
Chazen Museum of Art, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
Clarks International Art Collection, Somerset, UK
ConocoPhillips, Houston, Texas, USA
De Young Museum, San Francisco, USA
Denver Art Museum, Colorado, USA
Des Moines Art Centre, Des Moines, Iowa, USA
Diamond Bank of Nigeria, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria
Donum Estate Collection, Sonoma, California, USA
Eden Project, Cornwall, UK
Elf Village, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Embassy of Ghana, Copenhagen, Denmark
Fowler Museum, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
FLAG Art Foundation, New York, USA
Frederick Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapis, Michigan, USA
French Cultural Centre, Lagos, Nigeria
Goethe Institute, Lagos, Nigeria
Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi, UAE
The Hammermill Collection, Hellebaek, Helsingør, Denmark
The High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Hood Museum of Art, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
International Peoples’ College, Helsingør, Denmark
Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
Iwalewa-Haus, University of Bayreuth, Bayreuth, Germany
Jordan National Gallery of Arts, Amman, Jordan
Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California, USA
Missoni, Milan, Italy
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, USA
Musée Ariana, Geneva, Switzerland
Museum of Art, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, USA
Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany
National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C., USA
The Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
The National Gallery of Contemporary Art, Lagos, Nigeria
The Nelson-Atkins Museum, Kansas City, Missouri, USA
The Newark Museum, New Jersey, USA
Novartis Campus, Basel, Switzerland
North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
Osaka Foundation of Culture, Osaka, Japan
Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton NJ, USA
Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Canada
Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL, USA
Saint Louis Art Museum, St. Louis, MO, USA
Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville, Florida, USA
Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan
Tate Modern, London, UK
Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, Ohio, USA
UNAIDS, Geneva, Switzerland
Weatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro, North Carolina, USA
William Fisher Collection, Newark Delaware, USA
The World Bank Art Collection, Washington D.C., USA
Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
Zietz Collection of Zietz MOCAA, Cape Town, South Africa
21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanagawa, Japan

OCTOBER GALLERY ARTISTS