Speakers & performers
Awam Amkpa is Associate Professor of Drama, Social & Cultural Analysis, and Africana Studies at New York University. He is the co-founder and co-curator of the annual Real Life Pan-African Documentary Film Festival in Accra (Ghana). Author of several articles in books and journals on Modernisms in Theatre, Postcolonial theatre, Black Atlantic Issues, and Film studies he also wrote the book “Theatre and Postcolonial Desires” (2003). He directed film documentaries such as: “Winds Against Our Souls”, “Its All About Downtown”, “National Images and Transnational Desires”, and featured film “Wazobia!”. Between 2011-2013 he curated “Africa: See You, See Me” in Beijing and Macau (China), Rome and Florence (Italy), Dakar, (Senegal) and Lagos (Nigeria). He also curated the shows: “Africa: Significaciones” at Centro Provincial de artes Plasticas y Diseño, Havana (Cuba 2017); “ReSignifications: European Blackamoors, Africana Readings” at Museo Bardini, Villa La Pietra and Galleria Biagiotti, Florence (Italy, 2015); “ReSignifications: Black Portraiture in the Mediterranean Blue” and ‘Wole Soyinka: Antiquities Across Times and Place’ under the MANIFESTA12 Biennale, Palermo (Italy) in 2018.
Born and raised in Madagascar before settling in Paris at the age of twelve, Malala Andrialavidrazana fuels her practice by moving from one land to another. By way of the photographic medium, she interrogates barriers and interactions within cross-cultural contexts, thoughtfully shifting between private spaces and global considerations to explore social imaginaries. Over time, she has invented a language whose approach is resolutely turned toward history, while simultaneously evidencing a profound engagement with contemporary issues and developments. Graduate from the National Architecture School of Paris-La Villette (1996), Andrialavidrazana’s education informs her ability to look at the world through three-dimensional sight, and to use images to create new forms of circulation. She began her career as a visual artist by extending her investigation of Madagascan burial structures to cities throughout the Global South – Auckland, Buenos Aires, Guangzhou, and Santiago, among others. The resulting series, d’Outre-Monde (2003), dealing with funereal traditions beside urban multiple shapes and dimensions, was awarded the HSBC Prize for Photography. Andrialavidrazana’s work has been exhibited in numerous international venues. Recently, these have included: Bamako Encounters, Fondation Donwahi, Lagos Photo Festival, on the African Continent; Changjiang Photography & Video Biennial, Karachi Biennale, Dhaka Art Summit, Para-Site, in Asia; Kalmar Konstmuseum, PAC Milano, Lyon Biennial, EVA Ireland’s Biennial, Warsaw MoMA, in Europe; Fondation Clément, in the Caribbean; AIC, Ford Foundation, Aperture, in the US.
Jelili Atiku is a Nigerian multimedia artist with political concerns for human rights and justice. Through drawing, installation sculpture, photography, video and live art performance he strives to help viewers understand the world and expand their understanding and experiences, so that they can activate and renew their lives and environments. Since 2008, he has been involved in an ongoing performance project, In the Red, which uses red as a symbol of life, suffering, danger and violence. In 2008/2009, his performance video, Victim of Political Assassination was showcased in Video Library section of Rencontres Internationales in Paris, Berlin and Madrid. He also featured in the Geisai #12 Contemporary Art Fair, Tokyo, Japan (2009), 16th Festival International D’Art Video de Casablanca, Morocco (2009), Old News #6, Malmo, Lagos and Copenhagen (2009/2010) and Freedom to Create Prize, Singapore (2009). In 2017 Jelili Atiku was represented at the Venice Biennale as part of the 57th International Art Exhibition. In 2018 he was the first Artist Protection Fund Fellow at Brown University, USA. For over a decade, Jelili has put my art at service of the prevailing concerns of our times; especially those issues that threatening our collective existence and the sustenance of our universe.
Arnaud Cohen lives and works in France. Cohen explores the relationship between history and fiction, ancient and postmodern mythologies. His protean art draws from Situationist traditions to unpack frames of allegory, post truth and globalisation. His appropriationism extends across social and aesthetic forms from Greek sculpture to Reality TV. His work has been exhibited and performed extensively in Europe and around the globe (Palais de Tokyo, Tate St Ives, Berlin RLP Kunstverein, Venice Biennale’s Salon Suisse, Dark’art Biennale, Bienalsur Buenos Aires, …). This year’s past presentations include : Something Else Biennale Cairo, Memorial de la Shoah Paris, Nagel Draxler Gallery Cologne (solo). Subsequent presentations include : Bienalsur curated by Diana Wechsler and Anibal Jozami, Kampala Biennale curated by Simon Njami, solo exhibition at National Museum of Contemporary Art Bucharest curated by Enrico Lunghi.
Christian Danielewitz is an artist, researcher and writer whose work revolves around the socio-ecological wreckage caused by industries of resource extraction. He is particularly interested in hidden sites of contamination, geographies that have been permanently impaired by environmental damage (also known as sacrifice zones), and ventures into contested territories of ecological devastation to uncover the global division of toxic labour and virulent exposure. His work is informed by geology, biology, energy and deep time, and the noxious processing of minerals into elements of information architecture, that is, our contemporary image – and communication technologies.
Las Vegas-based Filipino painter Gig Depio presents the conjunctions of contemporary and historical forces in the form of intense, often large-scale, figurative compositions. Recipient of the 2016 Nevada Arts Council Fellowship Grant in Painting, he has exhibited across Nevada, with shows at the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno, the University of Nevada Las Vegas, the University of Nevada in Reno, and the Clark County Winchester Cultural Center Gallery, Las Vegas and in his native Philippines with a show titled “Bring Home the Bacon: From Feudal to Neoliberal,” at the National Commission for Culture & the Arts (NCCA) Gallery in historic Intramuros, Manila.
Tanner lives and works in downtown Los Angeles. Originally from Baltimore, he received a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art. A current member of the Los Angeles Art Association, his work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions around Los Angeles for over a decade. A self-described, “dedicated line junkie”. His work is an evolving struggle between control and spontaneity that reflects his sense of identity and his relationship with the environment. He finds energy and influence in the conflict, harmony and cadence of daily life downtown.
Paul Goodwin is an independent curator, urban theorist and researcher based in London. His curatorial, research and writing projects extend across the interdisciplinary fields of contemporary art and urbanism with a particular focus on black and diaspora artists and visual cultures. At the Centre for Urban and Community Research at Goldsmiths, University of London, between 2006 and 2010 he directed Re-visioning Black Urbanism, an interdisciplinary research project exploring the multiple modalities of blackness and urbanism in cities such as London, Lisbon and Paris. From 2008 to 2012 as a curator at Tate Britain he directed the pioneering Cross Cultural Programme that explored questions of migration and globalisation in contemporary British art through a programme of international conferences, workshops, talks and live art events. His curatorial projects include a number of internationally significant exhibitions including: Migrations: Journeys Into British Art, Tate Britain 2012; Thin Black Line(s), Tate Britain, 2011; Coming Ashore, 2011, Berardo Collection Museum in Lisbon, Portugal.
Kristian Handberg is an art historian, Ph.D., Postdoc at the University of Copenhagen. He has researched the importance of exhibitions and their international circulation in the postwar era through the research project “Multiple Modernities” at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art and the University of Copenhagen and organized the conference Multiple Modernisms. A Symposium on Globalism in Postwar Art (2017). Current project: “Curating the Contemporary: An Exhibition History of the Museum of Modern Art as a New Bildung Institution”. Recent publications: Conquering the Present in the Long Sixties: The curatorial birth of contemporary art (2019), “Multiple Modernisms. Curating the Postwar Era for the Present” in the anthology Curatorial Challenges (2019), and “In the Labyrinth of the Contemporary Condition: Curating the Labyrinthine at documenta” in Stedelijk Studies # 6 Lose Yourself! (2018).
Rikke Jørgensen is an Independent Curator, Director of the communications agency UrbanArt Communications and Founder of the Arts & Globalization Platform. She graduated with an MA in Comparative Literature, Communications and Art History from University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and Université Paris Diderot in Paris, France. She works on projects that combine artistic creation, reflection, discourse, research and cultural action. In 2004 she founded Nørrebro Art Salon in Copenhagen, Denmark – an exhibition and debate space with a focus on intercultural dialogue, inclusion and global artistic exchange within the Danish community. In 2005 she was the project manager of the first Research Festival in Denmark on behalf of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation. The first Arts & Globalization Conference entitled Achieving Intercultural Dialogue Through the Arts took place in Copenhagen in 2015 and aimed to engage with visuality in contemporary art practice and art theory in the context of globalization. It addressed the complex interplay between cultural policymaking, art curation and art production and promoted minority representation, accessibility and audience development in national art institutions. The background for the first Arts & Globalization Conference was the 10th Anniversary of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. In 2017 Rikke curated the first Arts & Globalization Pavilion in Venice, Italy with the program Remembering the Future. In 2018 she curated the program Art & Connectography with Valentina Gioia Levy, a collateral event of Manifesta 12 Palermo with a focus on hyperconnectivity, geopolitics and migration.
VALENTINA GIOIA LEVY
Valentina Gioia Levy is the artistic director of Valeria Costa Piccinini Heritage Fund (Rome, IT) and GAD – Giudecca Art District (Venice, IT). Since 2010, as an independent curator she collaborated with a number of cultural institutions, museums, art galleries and festivals around the world. In 2014, she coordinated a curatorial program for the National Museum of Oriental Art that aimed to present key Asian artists and practices. Since 2014 and 2017 she has been the curator of the visual arts program of the Festival of Villa Ada in Rome. Between 2014 and 2015 she curated two collateral shows of Kochi – Muziris Biennial (Fort Kochi, India). In 2015, she was guest curator of the first edition of Something Else OFF Biennale Cairo (Egypt) and in 2016 she was guest curator of the XII edition of Dak’art Bienniale (Senegal), under the direction of Simon Njami. In 2016, she was also co—curator of LAM360, Land Art Mongolia Biennial (Ulan Bator, Mongolia) and co-curator of Mediations Biennial Poznan (Poland). In 2017, she was a contributor for Arts and Globalization Pavilion during the 57th Venice Biennial. In 2018, she co-curated the program “Art & Connectography” with Rikke Jørgensen, a collateral event of Manifesta 12 hosted by Arts & Globalization Platform and she was a guest curator of the second edition of Something Else OFF Biennale Cairo.
Enrico Lunghi studied art history and archeology at the University of Strasbourg. After being research assistant at the Musée National d’Histoire et d’Art in Luxembourg from 1991 to 1995, he founded, together with Jo Kox, the Casino Luxembourg-Forum d’Art Contemporain in 1996, of which he was artistic director until 2008. From 2009 to 2016 he was general director of Mudam Luxembourg. Since then he has been research officer at the Ministry of Education (SCRIPT) and at the University of Luxembourg. He was curator for Luxembourg at the Venice biennial in 1995 (Bert Theis, Potemkin Lock), in 1999 (Simone Decker, Chewing and Folding Projects) and 2007 (Jill Mercedes, Endless Lust), and for the project 100 Sexes d’artistes by the Belgian artist Jacques Charlier in 2009. From 2005 to 2011 he was President of the International Association of Curators of Contemporary Art (IKT). He has written numerous articles for exhibition catalogs and, also contributes regularly to the monthly cultural paper kulturissimo in Luxembourg.
Ibrahim Mahama (b.1987) in Tamale, Ghana is an artist who lives and works in Accra, Kumasi and Tamale, Ghana. He started his practice through his interest in the history of materials and architecture. Failure and delay through specific forms always inform his choice of sites. He believes the works do not only occupy but are also occupied within the works/objects. Residues and points of chaos registered as marks within the forms he selects, they present us alternative perspectives of looking into the materials/Labour conditions of society. Form is important. His work has included objects from jute sacks used to transport commodities to the point of decay and later sewn together with a network of collaborators under specific Labour conditions which is then superimposed on architecture. The politics of the hand and it’s parallel relation with architectural forms become a lot more evident. His most recent work, ‘A straight line through the carcass of history’ has also dealt with forms related to the second world war and bacteria life. His work has been included in the 56 and 57 Venice Biennale, documenta 14 Athens and Kassel, Orderly Disorderly, Accra, Images An Age of Our Own Making, Denmark, the island is what the sea surrounds, Valletta 18, Malta and Spectacles Spectations, Kumasi Ghana and Labour of Many at the Norval Foundation, Cape Town. He finished a year residency with the DAAD in Berlin in 2018. His current interests are using specific architectural forms with history in the formation of spaces inspired by the potentialities and failures of modernity.
Waseem Marzouki graduated from Damascus University, Faculty of Fine Arts in 2007 with a BA in fine art. In 2012, he studied cinematography at the Global Cinematography Institute in Hollywood, California. He has held solo shows at Castelli Gallery, Los Angeles 2017. Saatchi Gallery, London 2016. Meem Gallery, Dubai 2014. Markhia Gallery, Qatar 2015. Institute of Islamic Cultures, Paris 2014. Waqif Art Center, Doha 2009, and Goethe Institute in Damascus 2007. He has also participated in group exhibitions in Switzerland, Berlin, Paris, London, Italy, Los Angeles, New York, Stockholm, Athena, Istanbul, Dubai, Syria and Qatar. Marzouki has worked extensively with film and has held screenings of his work at various galleries and film festivals including Doha Tribeca Film Festival, 2011. Venice Biennale, 2017. Saatchi gallery, 2016. Qatar museum, 2015. Tehran Film & TV Festival 2009, and Damascus the capital of culture 2008. He currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California.
Activist, Editor-in-chief, Cultural Producer and Filmmaker. Pascale Obolo was born in Yaounde, Cameroon. At an early age, already involved in various artistic expressions, she studied directing at the Conservatoire Libre du Cinéma Français in Paris and then obtained her master’s degree in cinema at the University of Paris VIII (experimental cinema section). A pioneer of urban culture, she filmed the early hip-hop scene and Parisian graffiti painters, self-producing several films about rap, street culture and taggers. As a feminist, she concentrated her gaze on gender with the Hip Hop women’s movement in the French suburbs and on the place of women in the contemporary art world. Her main focus is on the concept African Futurism. Some of her works have been exhibited at the Halle de la Villette, Paris in 2009, the Musée du Montparnasse, the Quai Branly Museum and the 2011 Dak’art Bienniale (Senegal). Pascale Obolo is co-founder of AFRIKADAA: a contemporary art magazine, an intellectual and artistic laboratory that aims to create a dynamic setting in Paris and the African diaspora. She also works as educator, curator and producer at La Colonie, Paris.