Ayò Akínwándé is an architect, photographer and multi-disciplinary artist who experiments with lens-based media, performance and installation. His work flow involves constant questioning on socio-political realities as his presentations incorporate spatial processes to evoke both intimacy and the monumental. He co-curated the 2017 Lagos Biennial and was also a participating artist at the exhibition held at the Nigerian Railway Museum.
Andy Amadi Okoroafor, an igbo man, impacting the world through creativity, navigating the world of cinema, fashion, publishing, art, design and curation with imagery as his guide.
Ayodele Arigbabu is a writer, architect and creative technologist, whose work traverses the fields of publishing, architecture, design, digital / interactive media, and urbanism. He is the publisher and editor of LAGOS_2060, an anthology of science fiction from Nigeria, published in 2013 and was curator of African Futures: Lagos, a festival on diverse future perspectives of the African continent, produced by Goethe Institut in three African Cities in 2015.
Marwa Arsanios is an artist, filmmaker and researcher who reconsiders politics of the mid-twentieth century from a contemporary perspective, with a particular focus on gender relations, urbanism and industrialisation. She approaches research collaboratively and seeks to work across disciplines.
Florence Ayisi is an award winning documentary filmmaker, presenting rare insights of African people, their lived experiences and culture from Woman-centred and Pan-African perspectives. Issues of intersectionality such as gender are central to her documentary practice. She has made films in Cameroon and Tanzania, including films such as Sisters in Law (co-directed with Kim Longinotto, 2005), Zanzibar Soccer Queens (2007), Zanzibar Soccer Dreams (co-directed with Catalin Brylla, 2016). Florence also has extensive experience of working with Third Sector Organisations such as International Development Agencies and Government Departments, including The World Bank Group (Cameroon), The National Programme for Participatory Development (PNDP – Cameroon), The Ministry of Arts and Culture (Cameroon), The International Centre for Research and Documentation on African Traditions and Languages, CERDOTOLA Cameroon, The Limbe City Council (Cameroon, Women and Community groups in Zanzibar and Cameroon).
Memory Biwa is a historian who lives in Windhoek, Namibia. Biwa’s work combines memory, performance, sound studies and archival theory. Her research focuses on narratives and re-enactments of violence and resistance to colonial war and genocide across southern Namibia and Northern Cape, South Africa. Her research on a 1950s sound collection from central Namibia has developed her interests in oral/aural sonority and performative excess. The project has expanded into a collaborative performance project, Listening at Pungwe, with Robert Machiri.
Seloua Luste Boulbina is a theorist of postcoloniality and decolonization of knowledge. At the moment, she is Associate Researcher (HDR) at the Laboratoire de Changement Social et Politique (Paris Diderot University), programme Director (Decolonizing Knowledge) at the Collège International de Philosophie (2010–2016).
Garnette Cadogan is an essayist whose research explores the promise and perils of urban life, the vitality and inequality of cities, and the challenges of pluralism.
Fatoumata Diabaté landed rather by chance in the field of photography until she realised: Photography is my life. Becoming a professional artist photographer is not an idea that comes easily as an option to a girl growing up in Bamako. Despite living in a city that is known through the work of Seydou Keïta, Malick Sidibé and others. Since 2013 Fatoumata runs her own street studio turning the practice of the masters into a mobile concept.
Asma Diakité is the head of cultural programs for sub-Saharan Africa at the Goethe-Institut South Africa. After her studies in theatre, film and media, philosophy and cultural anthropology in Frankfurt and in Cairo, she founded the artist network »Revolution Divine«. She received her doctorate after her research on the concept of exhaustion in performance art, for which she researched in Iran and Egypt amongst other countries. In her publication »Verausgabung - die Ästhetik der Anti-Ökonomie im Theater« she investigated the role of performance art in the Arab Spring.
Elvira Dyangani Ose is Director of The Showroom, London. She is affiliated to the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths and the Thought Council at the Fondazione Prada. Previously, she served as Creative Time Senior Curator, Curator of the eighth edition of the Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary art, and Curator of International Art at Tate Modern.
Ndidi Dike is a multi-disciplinary artist who keeps the past present by addressing critical issues of our times, and moonlights as a chef whenever it catches her fancy.
Editorial and Curatorial Committee — Annett Busch, Marie-Hélène Gutberlet, Magda Lipska
Jihan El-Tahri, a true woman on many aeroplanes, is an investigating, tireless questioning propelled force. She makes documentaries and writes books. And she is searching until she found the right person to talk to, the document to read, the turning point, the lost image.
Janusch Ertler works between photography, film and carpentry. His work investigates the symbolic, aesthetic and historical potential of materials that construct everyday life. He moves between Europe and South America.
Kodwo Eshun is an artist and theorist, a dedicated and committed listener and respondent, who might sharpen an utterance towards a continuative elaboration. Together with Anjalika Sagar is a co-funder of the Otolith Collective.
Rahima Gambo is a visual artist, storyteller and documentary photographer who explores themes of postcolonial Nigerian identity, gender, history, memory and socio-political issues through long-term visual projects.
asher gamedze and angel bat dawid are both musicians and cultural workers in their own rights. while angel has been tirelessly performing and organising gigs in the chicago scene, it was largely her 2019 album the oracle that has put this important artist and her work in the international arena with her anthems of resistance and freedom. asher works mainly as a musician, a writer, an organiser and as a student of history, his debut album dialectic soul is out on the corner in july 2020. the two met in 2018 and spontaneously played music together on that first meeting. the sonic record of the encounter made its way onto the oracle and is titled 'capetown.' since meeting, the two have become close friends, touring together, laughing together, eating together, dancing and playing together, thinking together, and becoming family.
Thulile Gamedze (b1992) is a Johannesburg-based cultural worker, moving between writing, curating, drawing and teaching (+).
Natasha Ginwala is a curator and writer working between Berlin and Colombo committed to curatorial strategies of endurance, collectivity and continuum, resonating with Audre Lorde’s provocation, “Revolution is not a onetime event.”
Lungiswa Gqunta is a visual artist, born in Port Elizabeth and working in Cape Town. Her practice considers the hidden structures of exclusion and oppression that continue to perpetuate the legacy of colonialism and how this is manifested in different forms of violence. Her work features familiar and domestic objects that are adapted and combined to create tools and weapons, engaging in histories of resistance and highlighting black women who have been overlooked in these narratives.
Günter Gretz is a courageous facilitator and producer of African music.
Stacy Hardy is a writer,an editor and a teacher. Her writing has appeared in a wide range of publications, including Chimurenga, Ctheory, Bengal Lights, Evergreen Review, Drunken Boat, Joyland, Black Sun Lit, and New Orleans Review and a collection of her short fiction, Because the Night, was published in 2015. She regularly collaborates with Angolan composer Victor Gama on multimedia works. Currently, she is working on a research-and-performance-based collaborative endeavour with anthropologist Kaushik Sunder Rajan and musician Neo Muyanga exploring biographies and geographies of breath, through a focus on colonial histories and postcolonial politics.
Lubaina Himid was born in Zanzibar, Tanzania, in 1954, and lives and works in Preston, UK, where she is professor of contemporary art at the University of Central Lancashire. In 2017, Himid won the prestigious Turner Prize. She is currently working for her first solo show in the United States, Work from Underneath, at The New Museum in NY. Invisible Narratives, an exhibition curated by Lubaina Himid at the Newlyn Art Gallery in Cornwall, features work by Lubaina Himid, Magda Stawarska-Beavan and Rebecca Chesney. (March-June 2019)
Isabel Hofmeyr is Professor of African Literature at the University of the Witwatersrand and Global Distinguished Professor at New York University. She has worked extensively on the Indian Ocean world and oceanic themes more generally. Recent publications include Gandhi’s Printing Press: Experiments in Slow Reading (2013) and a special issue of Comparative Literature (2016) on 'Oceanic Routes' co-edited with Kerry Bystrom. She heads up a project Oceanic Humanities for the Global South with partners from Mozambique, Mauritius, India, Jamaica and Barbados.
Laura Horelli is an artist and a filmmaker living in Berlin. Her works, mainly digital films, explore the intersection of the private and public spheres. She is interested in representations and mediations of the past taking on a microhistorical approach.
Karen Hurt is a co-founder of SPEAK Magazine. She is a writer of children's fiction, a materials developer, teacher, mentor, trainer and editor.
Shahira Issa is an artist and editor, meandering between Cairo, Berlin and other places.
Sehr Jalil is a visual artist, researcher and writer. An urge to find the mid points between the material and the surreal, practical and theoretical, connects her with diverse media and archives. Doing public art in Lahore as a member of the Awami Art Collective since 2015 further supports this subversion. Most recent curiosities have been, Indian soldiers in World War II through personal archives, probing stardust scientifically to discover cosmic unity. She is a lecturer in the department of Cultural Studies at the National College of Arts, Lahore.
Ayesha Jatoi trained as a miniature painter. While being immersed in concerns around the aesthetics of iconography, she questions the relevance of traditional modes of constructing images today, resulting in a practice that takes on hybrid forms. She is a founding editor of the Journal of Contemporary Art & Culture published from Lahore, and her work has been shown in exhibitions in Madrid, Dubai, Hong Kong, and Lahore, among others. Born in 1979, she lives in Lahore.
Connie Joseph is a PhD candidate at WISER and the Department of African Literature at Wits. Her interests include postcolonial literatures, gender and cultural studies. Her current work is on the representation of water spirits in Southern African Literature. She enjoys reading and writing poetry in her spare time.
Gladys Melina Kalichini is a visual artist and researcher from Lusaka. Her work explores the representation of women in relation to dominant, national and colonial histories. Her first project, consisting of a written piece and an exhibition, explored the erasure of women in Zambian history by analysing the ways in which Alice Lenshina's and Julia Chikamoneka's narratives are marginalized and made less visible within the context of the official narrative of the Zambian liberation struggle.
Katia Kameli is a French-Algerian artist living in Paris. Kameli’s work is closely linked to her personal experience of dual identities, exploring multiplicity and the ‘in-between’. Through video, photography, installation, she investigates intercultural spaces, intersecting identities and their construction.
Based on a research-oriented approach, she delves into historical events, political conflicts, complicated pasts and an often equally difficult present. Dialogues cover personal space, both emotionally and culturally. She emphasises the need for belonging and having a common narrative—something to lean against, and pictures and music as shared memories.
Theresa Kampmeier (Berlin), graduate of the academy of fine arts Frankfurt/Main, re/acts conceptually to contexts, textures, and the potential agency of the space and its activities, accompanying the project, emphasizing access points, and testing ir/reversible gestural interventions. She starts this process off from a photograph of Hotel Luxor (2015), a hotel now closed opposite the runway at TOR.
Maryam Kazeem is a writer based in Lagos. Her work consists of experimental writing, multimedia installation, and film. By exploring questions around the archive, memory, and what it means to write the black female body through image, text and other mediums, her work seeks to unearth the possibility of speculation as both an artistic and writing practice.
Patrick Keaveney is an artist based in Frankfurt/Main. His current project An si'vila ba ti'ka ka'ik mal ba ti'ka nak’kal’bah works through following traces, cutting things afresh and reassembling new and askew relations between the historical exhibition Poetry must be made by all: Transform the World! and the histories/futures of the Middle Sepik in Papua New Guinea, Bougainville Island and New Georgia Island in the Solomon Islands.
Brigitta Kuster does films and texts, publishes books, navigates through film-based research and is teaching cultural production with a sensitivity towards gender issues. She is an audiovisual-phile, with an amateur approach to whatever she is doing, but feels immediate unease once things stand still.
Pascale Lamche is an award-winning filmmaker who has made feature documentaries and series both as a writer/producer and writer/director for key broadcasters internationally. Her films have premiered at many international film festivals and include Stalingrad (2015), Black Diamond (2010), Pakistan Zindabad (2007), French Beauty (2005), Accused #1: Nelson Mandela (2004), and Sophiatown (2003).
Frank Leibovici, an artist and poet, has attempted to portray, in the form of exhibitions, performances and publications, so-called “low intensity” conflicts from a documentary point of view by using graphic scores and notation systems from experimental music, dance, linguistics—–he is currently working, with julien seroussi, on a new cycle of exhibitions and publications (bogoro, eds. questions théoriques, 2016; muzungu, bunkier sztuki, krakow; ngbk, berlin, 2017; cité internationale des arts, paris, 2018; école nationale de la magistrature, bordeaux, 2019; international criminal court, the hague, 2019-2020) around the invention of contemporary international justice and the first trial of the international criminal court (icc) of the hague.
Fabiana Lopes is a New York and São Paulo-based independent curator and a Ph.D. candidate in Performance Studies at New York University. Her work focuses on the artistic production from Latin America, and she is currently researching the production of artists of African descent in Brazil.
Robert Machiri—Chi aka Chimurenga (b. 1978 Robert Machiri ) is a Zimbabwean multidisciplinary artist based in Johannesburg. Machiri’s work exists at the juncture of two streams of practice; his curatorial concepts and a multi-disciplinary production of artworks. His most notable project PUNGWE traverses disciplines circling African soundings with related contemporary arts discourses and spaces.
Antonia Majaca is a dialogical thinker, curator, researcher and generalist based in Berlin. She currently leads the artistic research project The Incomputable at the Institute for Contemporary Art at Graz University of Technology. She recently co-curated Parapolitics–Cultural Freedom and the Cold War at Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin. Antonia also teaches (and studies) theory at the Dutch Art Institute. Her Feminist Takes:Early Works (co-edited by Rachel O'Reilly and Jelena Vesic) is forthcoming on Sternberg Press.
Shamim Meer is a co-founder of SPEAK Magazine and of Agenda (a Journal on Women and Gender). She is a writing coach, mentor and educator working with activists in communities and trade unions. Her published writings have covered feminist struggles, women's land rights, gender based violence among other issues.
Mapule Mohulatsi is a reader and writer from Johannesburg. She is currently a PhD student in African Literature at the University of the Witwatersrand. Her children's book ' Mizz President' was published in 2018.
Jackie Mondi is former SPEAK employee and Board Member. She is a language teacher, currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Education at the University of Georgia, USA.
Louise Mutabazi is a writer and an artist, developing her own vocabulary between visual art, video and text. She works as a production and administration manager for artistic and cultural projects in Rwanda.
Tinashe Mushakavanhu is currently a postdoctoral fellow at WiSER, University of the Witwatersrand. He is co-editing a forthcoming volume on Yvonne Vera's legacy in literature and visual arts called, We Laugh Even When the Roof is Falling (2020).
Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi is an artist living and working in Johannesburg. Her preoccupation is power: how it works, what structures it creates, how we relate to it, what threatens it. Inherent in her examination is an imagining of alternatives. She divides her time between her studio and the field of art as social practice. Nkosi is currently teaching a course at the University of the Witwaterand on rethinking Modernism.
Sarah Nuttall is Professor of Literary and Cultural Studies and Director of WiSER (Wits Institute for Social and Economic Research) in Johannesburg, South Africa. She is the author of Entanglement: Literary and Cultural Reflections on Postapartheid, editor of Beautiful/Ugly: African and Diaspora Aesthetics, and co-editor of many books including Negotiating the Past: The Making of Memory in South Africa; Senses of Culture; Johannesburg: The Elusive Metropolis and Loadshedding: Writing On and Over the Edge of South Africa. Recent essays include ‘Mandela’s Mortality’; ‘Secrecy’s Softwares’; ‘Surface, Depth and the Autobiographical Act’; ‘The Redistributed University’; and ‘The Earth as a Prison?’ She has given more than thirty keynote addresses around the world, and published more than sixty journal articles and book chapters. Her work is widely cited across many disciplines. She has taught at Yale and Duke Universities and in 2016 she was an Oppenheimer Fellow at the DuBois Institute at Harvard University. For seven years she has directed WiSER, the largest and most established Humanities Institute across the Global South.
With an interest in documenting and creating contemporary channels of communication, Temitayo Ogunbiyi creates mixed-media artworks. Her approach is often site-specific, and explores botany, human adornment, and patterning (textile, habits, and repeated gestures) —informed by history, current events, and her interactions with particular places. She uses drawing, sculpture, fabric, and collage to fragment and reorder this source material, which often includes personal anecdotes. Recently, Ogunbiyi has been creating renderings that combine hairstyles with botanical forms. She is currently developing these works into public sculptures.
Wura-Natasha Ogunji is a visual artist and performer. Her work includes drawings, videos and public performances. Her hand-stitched drawings, made on architectural tracing paper, are inspired by the daily interactions and frequencies that occur in the city of Lagos, from the epic to the intimate.
Uche Okpa-Iroha is a photographer and founder of the photography platforms The Nlele Institute (TNI) and the Lagos OPEN RANGE. He is also a big fan of Francis Coppola’s The Godfather, and he worked hard on the movie until he managed to edit himself into the picture (what became the award winning Plantation Boy project).
Iheanyichukwu Onwuegbucha is Associate Curator at the Centre for Contemporary Arts, Lagos and founder of e-museum.org, a virtual museum project. His current curatorial and research interests include: collective war memories in museums, inclusive virtual museums for Africa, and modern and contemporary African art with particular inter- est in female modernists from Africa.
Odun Orimolade is a multimedia artist and academic who engages her practice from a multifaceted perspective of transdisciplinary approaches, research and collaborations. Her work spans a plethora of interests linked by space, the intangible, orientation and behavioural tendencies. She keeps an open contexture to her practice, favouring drawing as a connecting point. She also creates mentorship avenues and contributes to various community projects. Orimolade lives and works in Lagos and lectures in the Fine Art Department, Yaba College of Technology where she currently serves as the Sub-Dean of the School of Art, Design and Printing.
Naadira Patel is an artist, designer and a researcher. She currently runs StudioStudioWorkWork, a multi-disciplinary studio for art, research, design and project management, with a focus on a range of social justice issues, while lecturing part time in the Department of Visual Arts, Wits School of Arts, Johannesburg. Research areas include issues arising from new forms of technology that shape, manipulate or augment our experiences of and our existence within the world, emerging forms of surveillance capitalism and questions on the new world of work, with a focus on ideas of precarious labour, exhaustion, and productivity.
Pamela Phatismo Sunstrum: “I am interested in this idea of locating land- scapes of alternative and yet-to-be known possibilities [...] within the space of imagination, rather than in a physical place. The space of imagination opens radically vast territories of possibility. The space of imagination allows for multi- ple, simultaneous ‘utopianisms.’ Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum was born in 1980 in Mochudi, Botswana, and currently lives and works between Johannesburg, South Africa and Ontario, Canada.
Emily Pethick is of the seldom species who can easily understand and grasp an idea and transform it into production and realisation. She was part of the moment when the conversation started about what became the Women on Aeroplanes project. She gave enthusiastic and full support as the director of The Showroom, London and is about to take off to become the new director of Rijksakademie van beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam.
Lisl Ponger is an extravagant researcher, investigating the history of colonialism, searching for an artistic, critical form that contains a good sense of humour. She started with experimental film, continued with staged photography and installations to currently playing out her artistic freedom as the (counter-) curator of The Master Narrative (Vienna, coming soon to Dresden).
It's difficult to find relevant information about Sue Rabkin online, and a few lines of "bio" won't tell anything about her live in the underground, her role in the ANC, her views, her audacity. One of the most interesting documents at hand is the narration of her daughter Franny, in a conversation for the Constitutional Court Oral History Project, January 13, 2012.
Zarmina Rafi is a Pakistani-Canadian writer and cultural producer. From 2013 onwards she has worked in the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan. In 2018, she was Assistant Curator of the inaugural Lahore Biennale.
Ruth Sacks, born 1977, Port Elizabeth, is a South African visual artist and academic who lives and works in Johannesburg. Sacks has exhibited widely both locally and internationally. Her primary medium is artist books and her latest edition, The Remaindering is forthcoming in 2021.
Anjalika Sagar together with Kodwo Eshun, Sagar is a co-founder of the Otolith Group. The Group was initiated in 2002 and also function as curators on the platform titled The Otolith Collective. This visual art duo work with moving image installations, with archival film, video, photography, performance, curation and publication.
Alya Sebti born in Casablanca (Morocco) in 1983, is a Berlin-based independent curator. In 2014, she was the artistic director for the 5th edition of the Marrakech Biennial. From April 2016, Alya directs the ifa Gallery Berlin (Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations, Berlin).
Afrah Shafiq is a multi/new media artist based out of Goa. Using the process of research as an artistic playground, Afrah intertwines archival findings, history, memory, folklore and fantasy to create a speculative world born of remix culture. Her work moves across platforms and mediums, seeking a way to retain the tactile within the digital and the poetry within technology. When she is not glued to her computer, she also makes glass mosaics.
Marika Sherwood born in Budapest in 1937, saved by Christians there, taught in London schools from 1965 to 1968. She found the lack of research on the history of Black peoples in the UK very upsetting and set about doing some research. Always without funding. Her first book was published in 1985. She co-founded the Black and Asian Studies Association in 1991. She is a Research Fellow at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies, University of London.
In her curatorial, publishing, teaching and research practice, Nadine Siegert engages with discourses on archives and collections within public institutions as well as the collective image archives of resistance and revolution. She moves with care, in thought and practice, within the fields of aesthetics and politics.
Cara Snyman belongs to the first generation of South Africans to study after the end of apartheid. She is the one who brings people together. Thanks to her thoughtful enthusiasm there is space to try out new ideas to become a vision for a project, a book, an exhibition, an artistic research. The Goethe-Institut in Johannesburg would not be the same, if she would not be there.
Michael C. Vazquez is a writer and editor. Before joining the magazine Bidoun: Art and Culture from the Middle East, he was the editor of Transition: An International Review at what was then the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard. Currently he is editing the first comprehensive monograph on the Iranian avant-garde theatre auteur Reza Abdoh, due Fall 2019.
very / Alexandra Papadopoulou and Marie Schopmann
Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa is an artist and researcher with a distinct sensitivity to what happens between the lines, working with a variety of forms and practices. She is a Research Fellow in Fine Art at the University of Bergen and Convenor of the Africa Cluster of the Another Roadmap School.
Dagmawi Yimer was born and grew up in Addis Ababa. He left his country after the 2005 post-election unrest in which hundreds of young people were killed and put in jail. After a long journey across the Libyan desert and the Mediterranean, he came ashore on the island of Lampedusa. In Rome, after having participated in a video-making workshop in 2007, he co-authored the film Il deserto e il mare (The desert and the sea) along with 5 other migrants. Subsequently he co-directed the 2008 documentary film Come un uomo sulla terra (Like a man on earth). He shot the documentary C.A.R.A. ITALIA (Dear Italy) in 2009 and Soltanto il mare (Nothing but the sea) in 2011, along with several other short films. In 2011 he coordinated the collective film project Benvenuti in Italia(Welcome to Italy), In 2013 a documentary entitled Va’ pensiero-walking stories, 2015 directed by Asmat-Names, and a short experimental documentary, Waiting 2020. He gives workshops and master classes on documentary film making and migration in schools and universities. Dagmawi is co-founder and vice president of the association Archives of migrant memories (AMM).