Give1Arts, envisioned and launched by Jacqueline Cofield in Dakar, Senegal in 2013, is a platform for emerging visual and performing artists to showcase and develop their craft, as well as an opportunity for community development and engagement of the arts. “When I arrived in Senegal in 2013 for the fellowship, I was inspired to create a platform within Give1Project, focusing on artists and cultural creatives. I am very proud of the impact of Give1Arts and it’s growing global legacy,” says Cofield. Give1Arts involves all areas of visual and performing arts, including dance, photography, film, theater, spoken word (slam), music, painting, sculpture, design, etc. Give1Arts is now globally active with chapters in Burkina Faso, Mali, Gambia, Benin, Rwanda, and growing.
Give1 Project, founded by Thione Niang, whose mission is to cultivate young global leaders, particularly in the area of entrepreneurship, invited Jacqueline Cofield, President of J Rêve International to Dakar, Senegal in December, 2013 to celebrate the grand opening of the new Give1Project global headquarters. Shortly after arriving Cofield recommended to Niang that he consider including a department within Give1Project that caters to the interests of artists, supporting the idea that artists are entrepreneurs and play a vital role in not only the community, but the economy as well, and emerging artists can benefit from developmental programming within the Give1Project platform. Niang appreciated the viewpoint, and proposed that Cofield create and launch the department, which she named Give1Arts.
Cofield, who had traveled to Dakar before as an NYU fellow, was able to quickly delve into the arts and culture scene, thanks to her fluency in french and interpersonal skills. Give1Arts, which Cofield serves as the Director, has produced various exhibitions in Dakar at prestigious venues such as The National Gallery of Dakar, and the historic Theater Daniel Sorano, where Give1Arts participated in the 2014 Dak’Art biennale. Well known Senegalese artists such as Akon, Viye Diba, Youssou Ndor, Daara J Family and others have visited the exhibitions of Give1Arts, as well as international guests in the arts such as Kehinde Wiley, Angelbert Metoyer, curator Kimberli Gant, Dr. Moyo Okediji, poet Amir Sulaiman. Diplomats from across Africa have also visited the exhibitions and events of Give1Arts. Give1Arts programming includes showcases and exhibitions, workshops, guest speakers and in partnership with J Rêve International, global artist exchanges. In May 2015, Give1Arts Benin was launched, and in the fall 2015, and spring 2016 Give1Arts will also be launched in Gabon, Kenya, Gambia and Niger.
Click here to view video: Jacqueline Cofield On Chicago’s WGN Talking about Give1Project
Jacqueline Cofield, curator and Director of the Give1Arts exhibition at the National Gallery of Dakar.