After the launch of IAM – Intense Art Magazine in Douala, Cameroon, with exhibitions, conferences and rich local artistic encounters, October continues with a number of exhibitions in London. Starting with The Chimurenga Library, a project co-curated by Chimurenga, The Otolith Collective and The Showroom. Founded by Ntone Edjabe in 2002, Chimurenga is at the centre of a vibrant new cultural projection across Africa, which includes championing new music, literature and visual arts. For their first UK presentation, Chimurenga infiltrates The Showroom’s building in the form of The Chimurenga Library, bringing together ideas, debates, events, broadcasts, music and sound recordings, publications, archive material and objects.
We are delighted to have lent images from the George Hallett collection curated by Christine Eyene through the Making Histories Visible project. These images are part of a larger research on Hallett’s documentation of South African exile in the 1970s-80s, Jazz musicians and African literature. The Chimurenga Library is a timely resource containing rare material that will feed into this research.
The Chimurenga Library is open at The Showroom until 21 Nov.
During the first five days (7-11 Oct) the library played host to PASS, the Pan African Space Station with a live broadcasting programme of music, interviews and events with Chimurenga collaborators in London including musicians, journalists, writers, curators and filmmakers among whom: Agency for Agency, The Otolith Collective, Christine Eyene, Shabaka Hutchings, Dego (2000 Black), Pass Me the Microphone (Amanprit Sandhu and Hansi Momodu-Gordon), Jenny Mbaye, Sorryyoufeeluncomfortable, Larry Achiampong, John Akomfrah, Phoebe Boswell, Paul Bradshaw, Audrey Brown, Elvira Dyangani Ose, Ekow Eshun, Ros Gray, Henriette Gunkel, Ayesha Hameed, Anthony Josephs, Michael McMillan, Christian Nyampeta, Funsho Ogundipe, George Shire, Tom Skinner and Matthew Temple. PASS at The Showroom was a platform that allowed rich cross-disciplinary encounters that brought together an array of practitioners whose work echoed each other.
In the diary
Mid-October is Frieze week and parallel art fairs including 1:54 – Contemporary African Art Fair. In addition to its 40 exhibiting galleries / project spaces and public programme, 1:54 is also a catalyst for the London African art scene. Highlights for this week include Boris Nzebo at Jack Bell Gallery, XEET by Cheikhou Ba at Golborne 50, Wiz Kudowo at Galery of African Art, Theo Eshetu: Constellations at Tiwani Contemporary, to name but a few. More events here.
David Roberts Art Foundation adds to Frieze week with its celebrated annual Evening of Performances in its recently inaugurated performance space, with London-based artist Caroline Achaintre, Swiss choreographer and artist Alexandra Bachzetsis, German performance artist John Bock, Brooklyn-based electronic music act Shannon F (Light Asylum) and Glasgow artist and spoken word performer Sue Tompkins.
An Evening of Performances, 15 Oct.
Exhibition: Albert the Kid is Ghosting until 12 Dec.
In the regions, Rockers, Soulheads & Lovers: Sound Systems Back in Da Day, a new exhibition exploring the golden era of African-Caribbean sound systems from the 1960s to the early 1980s, curated by Michael McMillan in collaboration with Gary Stewart, Trevor Mathison (Dubmorphology) and New Art Exchange (Nottingham). Exhibition runs to 3 Jan 2016.
The Tetley (Leeds) has just launched its Feast Wagon with a series of new commissions, exploring the history of spectacular touring shows and the influence of cultural icons in the formation of personal and collective identity. Ideas of exchange, circulation and migration are considered through large-scale sculptural installations, painting, collage, video and textile works by Simeon Barclay, Delaine Le Bas, Lubaina Himid and Susan Walsh. Their work is a response to a research by Leeds-based researcher and writer Irfan Shah. Until 10 Jan 2016.
At Tate Liverpool, the 2015 Visible Award: Temporary Parliament, an open jury consultation to decide on the 2015 Visible Award winning project. The curators of the Visible Project, Matteo Lucchetti and Judith Wielander, Tate Liverpool’s Artistic Director, Francesco Manacorda, advocate Dr Andrea Phillips and members of the jury will lead an open public debate in Liverpool Town Hall Council Chamber on 31st October. The 25,000 euros prize will be awarded at the end of the debate. The session will end with a video call with the winner.
Figurer/Exposer/Représenter le corps du refoulé postcolonial. Le cas « français », a workshop proposed by Françoise Vergès, Chair of Global South(s) studies at Collège d’études mondiales.
Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme, Paris, 3-4 Nov.
Fast Forward: Women in Photography, a two-day conference exploring the complex and dynamic evolution of the history of women in photography, from early commercial practices, to the impact of World War II on women and their work, to reframing the role of the archive. Considering both national and international discussions about women in the history of photography, this event presents some of the latest research and debates in the field.
Tate Modern, Starr Auditorium, London, 6 – 7 Nov.
Watch this space for more art news!