El Anatsui is a Ghanaian sculptor born in 1944 in Anyako (in the Volta Region of Ghana) but was active for much of his career in Nigeria. El trained at the College of Art, University of Science and Technology, in Kumasi, in central Ghana. He began teaching at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, in 1975 and has become affiliated with the Nsukka group. El Anatsui has conquered the planet while living and working in the Nigerian university town of Nsukka.”

On his use of recycled materials:

I return them to use by giving them a different function, a higher function and maybe even the ultimate function. Each bottle-top returning as an object of contemplation has the capacity to reveal to us a more profound understanding of life than it ever did as a stopper on a bottle.

On his status as a “community artist”:

My resources, materials, and human labor are sourced from the community and I believe that makes me a community artist. The ideas I work with, even if sourced from the community, address issues that go from the community to the outside world. They have universal resonance and relevance. I believe that makes me not exclusively a community artist.