Art Term

Laboratoire Agit’Art

Founded in Dakar in 1974, Laboratoire Agit’Art was a revolutionary and subversive art collective that sought to combine traditional African performance and creativity with a modern aesthetic

Established by the artist Issa Samb, the filmmaker Djibril Diop Mambéty painter El Hadji Sy and the playwright Youssoupha Dione, Laboratoire Agit’Art were an interdisciplinary collective, devising street performances, improvisational happenings, installations and workshops. Although diverse in their practice, they were united in critiquing and challenging the prevailing négritude philosophy in Senegal.

Their outlook was political, and community focused, publishing manifestos and creating installations out of street detritus that raised issues about African contemporary society. Today Laboratoire Agit’Art are considered to be one of the most influential African art collectives of the twentieth century.