Joseph Awuah-Darko is a museum director, African contemporary art specialist, social entrepreneur and philanthropist. In 2020 he founded the Noldor Residency in Accra, Ghana, now under the Institute Museum of Ghana. Noldor is an art residency and fellowship program for contemporary African artists that also promotes Ghana’s global art scene. In Spring 2021, YALI partnered with the Noldor Residency in Accra, Ghana and "A Seamless Journey to Accra, Ghana", We asked Joseph some questions.

Which are your favourite art galleries in Accra?

I love Ada Contemporary art gallery, it’s one of the coolest galleries in Accra. I have deep respect for the Nubuke Foundation which was designed by my friend and architect Juergen Strohmayer.

What does a typical day at the Residency look like?

It’s very dynamic. I try to be involved as much as possible in the day-to-day within my capacity as the founder and director, but I'm fortunate to have a team of seventeen staff that supports the institution. For me typically it involves a lot of artists' studio visits in the morning, various curatorial meetings, workshops and sessions with the artists. During the day I answer a lot of emails and correspondence with custodians, collectors and institutional thinkers, regarding collaborative opportunities for the artists and the context within their work. Occasionally there are a few board meetings I have to attend.

Who are your favourite artists of all time?

This is a bit hard to answer - there are many. I’ve always been in love with El Anatsui's work, he is an iconic Ghanaian artist whose medium is tapestry. He can be considered the godfather of modern and contemporary African art. I also love works by Yves Tanguy, who was discovered by Peggy Guggenheim. Additionally, I adore Ibrahim Mahama who currently has a show at the White Cube in London, that I was privileged to see. I really do love the work of Njideka Akunyili Crosby, and the audacity of Louise Bourgeois as well, and last but not least of course Kehinde Wiley who has been at the residency in Accra in June 2021. We hosted him with the Ministry of Tourism, Art and Culture of Ghana for dinner. He is a deeply important part of our cultural sphere, being one of the most important black contemporary artists of all time.