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Abuja, Miami, Seoul: Gallery Director Dolly Kola-Balogun Maps Out Her Path to African Art’s World Domination

Her first attendance at London’s 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair was eye opening and inspired her entry into the art world, but she did so with a bang, and she hasn’t stopped since. Dolly Kola-Balogun is the 27-year-old founder of Retro Africa, a gallery started in Abuja, Nigeria with a mission to advancing African contemporary art across the globe. Now, Retro Africa is one of Nigeria’s leading contemporary art galleries, representing African artists from all over the continent and beyond. The gallery regularly participates in the very art fair that inspired its creation. This summer Retro Africa is collaborating with Lehmann Maupin for its first group show in New York, exhibiting gallery artists Victor Ehikhamenor, Chéri Samba and Nate Lewis (Do This in Memory of Us, Lehmann Maupin, West 22nd Street gallery, 19 July-17 August). “The show exemplifies Retro Africa’s mission to advance contemporary African art by showcasing work that expands the multitude of African expressions throughout the continent and abroad,” Kola-Balogun says.