African mural painting

“Painting is one of the easiest ways to express myself because that is what I love.” – Chief Jimoh Buraimoh

At a Glance

  • Live online course
  • Mondays 18:00 - 20:00
  • 10 weeks: January to March
  • Tutor: Alinta Sara
  • Fee: £99 (applies to all applicants)
Booking link

Whether you have studied African art, or general art history, before or not, if you are interested in some of the key aspects of African art history this course is for you.

Concentrating on modern and contemporary African art, this course will challenge the assumption made so often by art historians and gallery curators that African art belongs under the categories of folk art or so-called 'tribal' art or is somehow unchanging and traditional. With this course we will try to break out of those clichés to discover the exciting history, and sheer diversity and vibrancy, of modern and contemporary art in Africa.

Of course, contemporary African art is difficult to define. There are 54 countries located on the continent, each with its own history, culture and traditions. Even within a single country there are also numerous artists, each with her or his own artistic agenda. To try and cope with the breadth of this topic in a short course, we will explore the world of modern and contemporary African art across the continent by adopting a thematic approach, each week taking a different strand of the rich tapestry of African artistic culture and history to explore.

The course is taught in an open and inclusive way, so your thoughts, experiences and opinions will be welcome as part of the discussion.

The course is aimed at complete beginners, and no previous qualification or knowledge of art or art history is necessary.

Live Online Course

This course will be taught live online (via the internet). To take part in the course you will need a suitably equipped device for session attendance each week on the weekday and time shown above.

Class Recordings

These classes are not recorded


Attendance Certificate


Successful completion of this course leads to the award of an Imperial College attendance certificate


Terms and conditions apply to all enrolments to this course. Please read them before enrolment

Course Information

Course Programme and Additional Reading

Course Programme (may be subject to some modification)

Week 1 - Contemporary Art Worlds in Africa
Week 2 - Art Education: Ghana and Nigeria
Week 3 - Gendering of Art
Week 4 - Contemporary photography
Week 5 - Contemporary Arts of Ethiopia and the Ethiopian Diaspora
Week 6 - Contemporary Art in Kenya
Week 7 - Contemporary Art in Angola
Week 8 - Contemporary Art in the Republic of Benin
Week 9 - An overview of African architecture
Week 10 - Dialogues between Africa and its Diaspora

Additional Reading

There is no compulsory reading required for this course, and there is no set course text, but if you would like to read more on the subject we suggest:

  • Kasfir, Sidney, Contemporary African Art (London; New York: Thames & Hudson, 1999)
  • Njami, Simon et al. Africa Remix (London: Hayward Gallery, 2005)
  • Enwenzor, O. and Okeke-Agulu, C, Contemporary African Art since 1980 (Bologna: Damiani, 2009)

Your Tutor

Photograph of Alinta SaraAlinta Sara is an art historian who studied at SOAS University of London. Her current research focuses in the cultural links between Africa and the Diaspora. Her current research is on the Afro-Brazilian architectural heritage in the Bight of Benin and reflects on the link between collect memory, space and architecture.

Alongside her research, Alinta works as a French language tutor at Imperial College as well as a freelance workshop producer with various organisations and galleries in London such as the October Gallery, Lon-Art, the Africa Centre, EEA.

Alinta is also the co-founder of Bokantaj, a collective promoting dialogue between cultures through art.

Course Fees and Rate Categories

HoursWeeksStandard RateInternal RateAssociate Rate
 20 10 £99 £99 £99
Fees quoted are for the whole course. Part-payments are not possible.

Rate Categories and Discounts

Standard Rate

  • Applicable to all except those who fall under the Internal Rate or Associate Rate category, respectively.

Internal Rate

  • Current Imperial College students and staff (incl. Imperial NHS Trust, Imperial Innovations, ancillary & service staff employed on long-term contracts at Imperial College by third-party contractors)
  • Individuals enrolling under our Friends & Family scheme

Associate Rate

  • Alumni of Imperial College and predecessor colleges and institutes
  • Austrian Cultural Forum staff
  • City & Guilds College Association members
  • Francis Crick Institute staff, researchers and students
  • Friends and Patrons of the English Chamber Orchestra
  • Harrods staff
  • Historic Royal Palaces staff
  • Lycee Charles de Gaulle staff
  • Members of the Friends of Imperial College
  • Members of the Kennel Club
  • Members of the London Zoological Society
  • Members of the South London Botanical Institute (SLBI)
  • Members of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)
  • Natural History Museum staff
  • National Health Service (NHS) employees
  • Residents of postcodes SW3, SW5, SW7, SW10 and W8
  • Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council staff
  • Royal College of Art and Royal College of Music tutors and other staff
  • Royal Geographical Society staff
  • Science Museum staff
  • Staff of Exhibition Road Cultural Group (Discover South Kensington) organisations
  • Students (non-Imperial College)
  • Teachers and other staff of UK schools
  • Tutors and other staff of institution members of the Association of Colleges
  • Tutors and other staff of other universities and higher education institutions
  • Victoria and Albert Museum staff

Late enrolment

It is possible to enrol on many CLCC Evening Class and Lunchtime Learning programmes after the course has started. For non-language courses this is subject entirely to agreement by the tutor. For language courses it is subject to agreement by the language Coordinator conducting level assessment. If you want to join a course late do bear in mind there might be work you will need to catch up on, particularly in language courses.

Term Dates 2022-23

HoursWeeksSpring termSummer termSummer School
 20  10 Week commencing 16 January to week ending 25 March 2023* n/a n/a
*This is a 1-term course

Enrolment Process

Web enrolment is now open

Enrolment and payment run through the Imperial College eStore. When enrolling:

  • Do check on the drop down menu above called "Course Fees and Rate Categories" to see if you are eligible for a discounted rate and also do make sure you select that rate when enrolling on the eStore
  • If you are a first-time eStore user you will need to create an account before enrolling. You can do this by entering an email address and password. This account can then be used for any future enrolments via the eStore.

When you have enrolled you will be sent the following email notifications:

What is sentWhen is it sentWhat does it contain
1. Payment confirmation Is sent instantaneously following submission of your online application
  • This is a receipt for your payment and includes payment date, order number and course title
  • Confirmation of your place on your chosen course will follow later
2. Enrolment confirmation Is sent within 10 working days. Please treat your payment confirmation as confirmation that your applicant details and payment have been received
  • Re-confirms your course choice
  • Shows your course's term dates
  • Confirms the day and time of your course
3. Programme information Is usually sent on Friday late afternoon the week before term starts
  • Contains joining instructions for your course, incl. tutor contact details
If you need further help with the above information please ring 020 7594 8756

Any Questions?

If you have any questions about the academic content or teaching of this course please contact the Course Tutor, Alinta

If you have any questions about your enrolment or payment processes please contact the Programme Administrator, Christian Jacobi,