As the art world’s focus turns to Marrakech, with the opening of the Al Maaden Museum of Contemporary Art and the African continent’s first 1:54 Contemporary African Art fair, leading curators, collectors and critics name their artists to watch

Jean Pigozzi, photographer and collector

‘Almost 30 years ago I went to see a show called Magiciens de la terre  in Paris. I was struck by the work exhibited by a group of African artists, and I decided to start my own collection,’ says Jean Pigozzi, who has since amassed more than 10,000 works by more than 100 African artists. For guidance Pigozzi hired the show’s curator, André Magnin. He has acquired nearly all of his collection directly from the artists.

‘My good friend Charles Saatchi gave me some important advice: if you like an artist, buy them in depth,’ Pigozzi says.

Some of Pigozzi’s current favourites? ‘Congolese sculptor Bodys Isek Kingelez makes great work and is showing at MoMA this year. I like Frédéric Bruly Bouabré from the Côte D’Ivoire and George Lilanga from Tanzania, too.’

Tokini Peterside, Founder and Director of Art X Lagos, Nigeria

Tokini Peterside created ART X Lagos in 2015 as part of her entrepreneurship MBA, after spending several years developing Nigeria’s luxury and culture sectors. As West Africa’s first international contemporary art fair, ART X Lagos helps promote African contemporary art. ‘The global discourse on visual art is incomplete without Africa’s perspectives, histories and stories,’ says Peterside. ‘We need to make African art a cornerstone of the global art market through investing in institutions and expanding the collector base. It shouldn’t be marginalised or considered niche.’ Read more