The Africa Center provides a gateway for engagement with contemporary Africa.
The Africa Center’s work is premised on the idea that this emerging market of one billion people, characterized by extraordinary diversity and complexity, is inescapably relevant to building a prosperous and secure future for the world.
Africa is the world’s oldest continent, while boasting the youngest population; it encompasses a huge land mass, but a small population in relation to its size; and it possesses great natural resources, only surpassed by its enormous human potential. These unique dynamics place Africa at the center of global discourse, and The Africa Center will serve as the platform and hub for this discussion.
Encompassing culture, policy, and business, The Africa Center will operate locally and globally to transform our understanding of the continent by promoting partnership and collaboration between Africa and the United States. The Center will host visual, performing, and digital arts presentations; develop and disseminate innovative educational tools; convene peer-to-peer exchanges; and sponsor results-oriented policy dialogue.
The Africa Center will be a home for exhibitions, performances and showings of visual and digital art from Africa. It will be a space in which the continent speaks for itself and a platform for the most compelling contemporary culture. The Center will be more than a venue; it aims to foster new collaborations and dialogues between African artists and those in the United States.
The Africa Center’s policy initiatives focus on building innovative spaces for creative discussion about Africa’s future. Working in partnership with a multidisciplinary cohort of visionaries from the continent and the diaspora, we will articulate questions addressing current economic, environmental, and social challenges. Our community will co-design solutions that have outsized positive impacts on the future of our continent and the world.
The Africa Center will help the private sector to navigate fifty-four distinct business climates. We will make hard-to-obtain data available and understandable, and will facilitate peer-to-peer introductions. We will give African entrepreneurs exposure to New York’s private sector, help potential partners find each other, share best practices, and explore how private enterprise can help drive transformational developments on the continent.
The Africa Center has launched inaugural programming including exhibitions, performances, talks, readings, book signings, and film screenings. The Center’s first year of programming is an opportunity to experiment and test cultural programming, including the intersections with policy and business, with the range of audiences that The Africa Center targets.
The Africa Center’s café and installation space is also home to Teranga, a fast casual dining concept by Chef Pierre Thiam. Teranga highlights food from the continent and hosts tastings and cooking demonstrations that are aligned with the Center’s programming and overall mission.