World-renowned artists have transformed Ikea dining pieces into one-of-a-kind designs in celebration of 30 years of the Pan African Film & Arts Festival

The Pan African Film & Arts Festival (PAFF) will present, “All Artists Have a Seat at the Table,” a new and innovative art program sponsored by Ikea in celebration of 30 Years of PAFF.  

Under the direction of PAFF Art Director Allohn Agbenya, five esteemed artists are contributing their creativity to revamp an IKEA dining set. The furniture has been transformed into individual pieces of art inspired by the theme: PAFF 30, PAFF Roots.  

The pieces were previously on display at four Ikea stores throughout Southern California and will be viewable at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza from Thursday, April 21, through Sunday, May 1.   

This piece is part of the display, “All Artists Have A Seat at the Table.” (PAFF)

Marc Brogdon, PAFF marketing director, said, “One of my favorite African Proverbs says, ‘A tree’s beauty lies in its branches, but its strength lies in its roots.’ Utilizing our artists and Ikea wooden furniture to create powerful artwork is the perfect symbolism of our deep-rooted connection to the community.”    

“All Artists Have a Seat at the Table,” is a celebration of PAFF and the artistry showcased over the years. For more than three decades, PAFF has united folks across the diaspora—creating an inspiring platform for the partnership with Ikea.  

 “The dining table is the universal space for gathering, our sustainable and accessible furniture provided the perfect blank slate for the artists to illustrate PAFF’s rich legacy and commitment to bringing people together to share the Black experience,” shared Kevin Matthews, Ikea U.S. regional marketing manager.  

“As the leader in life at home, we want to celebrate the importance of home and the role it plays for the many. This work naturally demonstrates our core value of togetherness in a vibrant and unique way.”   

Artists used Ikea’s wooden furniture to symbolize connections in the Black community. (PAFF)

“As a curator and art director, I selected artists for the IKEA Project whose works of art present an array of diasporic characteristics that borrow from the broad field that is our celebrated history & traditions,” said Agbenya.  

“Africa and her global artistic roots and outreach have been influential on every continent. Rich in texture, proverbial wisdom, beauty, and evolutionary flow.”   

The participating artists include Agbenya, a contemporary artist whose roots celebrate the fibers and cultural pride of West Africa and beyond. Born in Ghana, he now resides in Los Angeles.  

Sandra Zebi is an artist from Sao Paulo, Brazil, who came to Los Angeles in 1986, intrigued and inspired by the cultural diversity that the city has to offer.   

Marvin Obasogie Aimiuwu started drawing and painting as a child in Nigeria, studied fine art in college, and has pursued artwork full time since coming to the United States.   

Aziz Diagne is a multi-media artist from Senegal, West Africa. He grew up amid the traditional art forms of his homeland including rock carving, ceramic and wood sculpture, murals, tapestry, and Thiesoise (reverse painting on glass).   

Charles A. Bibbs, a native son of Southern California, is an internationally acclaimed artist, entrepreneur, and philanthropist who has made a significant impact on contemporary arts.   

The full program for the 30th annual Pan African Film and Arts Festival will take place in person and virtually, April 19 – May 1, in Los Angeles at its flagship venues the Directors Guild of America, Cinemark Baldwin Hills and XD and Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza.   

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