The Johannesburg Art Fair recently showcased the works of 400 African contemporary artists, attracting more than 10,000 visitors. Organizer Ross Douglas there had been an explosion of interest in African art in recent years.
“Africa has always had a strong tribal art and a strong craft component, and that will always stay,” he said.
“But that doesn’t mean there can’t be a contemporary market existing alongside that, and if you look in South Africa at the contemporary market in the last four or five years, it’s absolutely exploded. If you look at the number of young black artists doing well, making a living, it’s extraordinary. Five years ago it just didn’t exist,” Douglas said.
Read more from CNN.
Abhisit Vejjajiva, Thailand‘s prime minister, declared a state of emergency in Bangkok today, handing the army broad powers to restore order after anti-government protesters broke into a parliament building.
As a Black Hawk helicopter with five soldiers armed with M-16 rifles flew ministers to safety, other politicians scaled the compound’s walls to escape the most chaotic protest occurring in several weeks of demonstrations.
The protesters want Abhisit to dissolve the government and call elections within 15 days. Read more in the Guardian.
If you listen to climate scientists — and despite the relentless campaign to discredit their work, you should — it is long past time to do something about emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, economist Paul Krugman writes. If we continue with business as usual, they say, we are facing a rise in global temperatures that will be little short of apocalyptic. And to avoid that apocalypse, we have to wean our economy from the use of fossil fuels, coal above all.
But is it possible to make drastic cuts in greenhouse-gas emissions without destroying our economy?
In what follows, Nobel Prize-winner Krugman will offer a brief survey of the economics of climate change or, more precisely, the economics of lessening climate change. I’ll try to lay out the areas of broad agreement as well as those that remain in major dispute. Read more in The New York Times.
Thailand will cancel $1.3 billion worth of farmers’ debt, a move that could help placate a constituency increasingly hostile to the administration of Abhisit Vejjajiva.
Thousands of demonstrators, many of them from Thailand’s rural heartland, are camped in central Bangkok and say they will remain there until Mr Abhisit resigns as prime minister.
The debt forgiveness program echoes a smiliar one run by Thaksin Shinawatra, the former prime minister who is a hero to many rural Thais. While in office, he declared a moratorium on rural debt, cementing the loyalty of a formidable political constituency that remains to this day.
Mr Thaksin was removed in a military coup in 2006 and is in self-imposed exile to avoid a two-year sentence for breaching conflict of interest laws, but his supporters have done consistently well at the ballot box. Read more in the Financial Times.