Sunday, March 15, 2020

One Year Ago...

Copyright: Chika Okeke-Agulu
One year ago, today, you left. 
I am, Still picking the shards 
Awaiting your midnight call




Sunday, February 23, 2020

Sidney Kasfir's Memorial Service today, Feb. 23. 2020

Photo: courtesy, Valley News

Today, family, friends, and colleagues of Professor Sidney Littlefield Kasfir, Professor Emerita, at Emory University who died last December will gather at the Canon Chapel, on the university campus in Atlanta, to remember and celebrate her life. This memorial event will start at 1:00PM Eastern and will be live-streamed here:   https://youtu.be/NRUzQ1T0LJY

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Curator of African Art @ Brooklyn Museum

Curator, African Art
We seek an exceptional communicator and scholar to oversee our curatorial program in the Arts of Africa. The successful candidate will be an engaged curator/scholar with a commitment to our mission and have a proven ability to conceptualize original, canon-expanding, and timely collection and loan exhibitions.
The Curator, African Art plays a key leadership role on our curatorial team and serves as an institutional ambassador, actively engaging with collectors and patrons, professional colleagues, partner institutions, and the Brooklyn community. This is an exceptional and timely opportunity: we are currently in the planning stages to establish a new, permanent gallery dedicated to our renowned collection of African artworks, and have already raised significant support for this project.
The Brooklyn Museum acquired our first works from sub-Saharan Africa in 1900, and today ours is one of the largest collections of African art in the United States, numbering over 6,000 objects and works of art. The core of the collection focuses on the arts of West and Central Africa and was acquired in 1922, and our 1923 display of 1,500 works remains the largest exhibition of African art ever mounted. The collection has since grown to include works spanning more than 2,500 years, with over one hundred different cultures represented.
Requirements:
  • Advanced degree in art history or a related discipline such as Africana studies, anthropology, or history, with a strong knowledge of historical material; Ph.D. or commensurate experience preferred
  • At least five years of experience at a museum, arts non-profit, or other cultural organization, as well as a record of publication
  • Excellent writing and compelling presentation skills
  • Collaborative leadership skills, with the ability to work effectively with the entire Museum team    
  • Strategic thinking and vision to bring our collections alive and excite others in the process, including Board members, donors, and press
  • Deep commitment to engage a wide and diverse audience in innovative and exciting ways
Responsibilities:
  • Assess and rethink our extensive holdings of African art to organize an innovative reinstallation of the entire collection for a new gallery space
  • Research and interpret the collection and participate in cross-departmental exhibitions, installations, and publications, in collaboration with the full curatorial team
  • Conceptualize and produce innovative, canon-expanding exhibitions, both for exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum and for travel to other venues
  • Work with the Shelby White and Leon Levy Director and the Deputy Director/Chief Development Officer to raise support for the new galleries and attract major transformational gifts to build the collection
  • Collaborate with our social media team to promote new acquisitions and collection-related activities and initiatives, to increase media attention and audience engagement
  • Lead scholarly research and writing on the history and interpretation of objects and further research, update, and expand the collection database for online use
  • Advocate for public and educational programming to increase visibility of the Arts of Africa collection and generate public interest
  • Respond to collection inquiries and loan requests as needed
  • Work with the Conservation team to address and remedy specific preservation issues
Start date: Immediately
Department: Arts of Ancient Egypt, Africa, and Asia
Reports to: Director of Collections and Curatorial Affairs
Position type: Full-time
Union status: Non-union
FLSA status: Exempt
Schedule: 35 hours per week, Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm
Apply online

Monday, January 13, 2020

2020 Igbo Conference : Igbo Mobilities

THE 9TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL IGBO CONFERENCE
JOIN US FOR OUR FIRST CONFERENCE IN NIGERIA
IGBO MOBILITIES : People, Trade & Knowledge
Theme: Exploring the financial, cultural, intellectual impact and influence of the Igbo both locally and globally.

DATE: 2nd – 4th July, 2020
VENUE: Princess Alexandra Auditorium (PAA),
 The University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
#nsukka2020 | #igbomobilities | #igboconference
( Click here to download the pdf version )
The Igbo Conference is an annual international conference usually held at SOAS, University of London. The aim of the Igbo Conference is to encourage and promote Igbo Studies in the UK and beyond. In recognition of the limited avenues for Igbo language and cultural studies available in British Universities, the Igbo Conference seeks to provide a forum for intellectual and cultural exchange between scholars, students and members of the community.

As our conference serves as a unique bridge between the community and academia, each year we also include interactive sessions, masterclasses and workshops in our programme. In the last eight years, the conference has created discussions amongst contributors from all over the world. The ninth instalment of the Igbo Conference will be held in Nigeria for the first time at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

Igbo Mobilities: People, Trade and Movement
The study of ‘mobilities’ centres on the movement of people, goods and ideas. It explores the circumstances that bring about this movement, as well as the constraints to and the wider socio-political implications of this movement. We invite conference participants to engage with the concept of mobilities in relation to the Igbo experience in the pre-colonial, colonial and post-independence eras.

The Igbo have developed and sustained a reputation centering on their participation in commerce within Nigeria and abroad. The international dimensions to Igbo business practices provides one example of an Igbo-centred approach to the study of mobilities. The movement of people and goods along the river Niger was central to the development of cities in Igboland, and contributed to the development of the largest market in West Africa situated in Onitsha. Taking a historical view of mobilities, we encourage papers which examine the changing migratory patterns, trade routes and forms of knowledge exchange that have come about through Igbo mobilities.

In an increasingly networked and globalised world, we are interested in exploring the financial, cultural and intellectual impact and influence of the Igbo ‘abroad’ and at ‘home’. This conference encourages a broad view on the usage of ‘mobilities’, encouraging contributions which look both at movement and exchange between the Igbo and their neighbours as well as the Igbo presence in our globalised world.

ORGANISERS : The Igbo Conference, in partnership with:
– The Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka
– Centre for African Studies, SOAS, University of London
– City, University of London

The Igbo Conference
We invite papers that examine a variety of approaches to Igbo mobilities which include, but are not limited to:

• Igbo entrepreneurship and transnational business
• Military rule and the ‘brain drain’
• The ‘been-to’ figure in literature & film
• Diaspora writing, music & film
• Igbo music in the local and global market
• Igbo language and cultural presence in digital spaces
• Traversing national borders: issues of migration
• Hometown associations
• Xenophobia and Igbo communities abroad
• Igbo mobilities within Nigeria
• Nollywood films & their global circulation: iROKOtv, DStv & Netflix
• The river Niger & movement across West Africa
• Medicine and Health Matters
• Refugees & the Nigeria-Biafra war
• Igbo cultural production & the global market
• Igbo spirituality in the Americas
• Igbo language: differences in dialect & language in motion
• Igbo knowledge production & knowledge exchange
• The literature of Igbo writers in translation
• Trade and the development of Igbo towns & cities: Onitsha, Aba & Abiriba
• The Nsukka school of art & international gallery spaces
• Igbo Business incubation systems and Apprenticeship

Organisers: The Igbo Conference, in association with the Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria Nsukka; SOAS University of London and City, University of London

Venue: The conference will be held at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, from July 2-4, 2020 at the Princess Alexandra Auditorium (PAA).

Participants are welcome to present in English or Igbo, but if presenting in Igbo we ask that that an English Language translation is provided as well.
The Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka Centre for African Studies, SOAS, University of London and City, University of London

The Igbo Conference
We invite papers that examine a variety of approaches to Igbo mobilities which include, but are not limited to:

• Igbo entrepreneurship and transnational business
• Military rule and the ‘brain drain’
• The ‘been-to’ figure in literature & film
• Diaspora writing, music & film
• Igbo music in the local and global market
• Igbo language and cultural presence in digital spaces
• Traversing national borders: issues of migration
• Hometown associations
• Xenophobia and Igbo communities abroad
• Igbo mobilities within Nigeria
• Nollywood films & their global circulation: iROKOtv, DStv & Netflix
• The river Niger & movement across West Africa
• Medicine and Health Matters
• Refugees & the Nigeria-Biafra war
• Igbo cultural production & the global market
• Igbo spirituality in the Americas
• Igbo language: differences in dialect & language in motion
• Igbo knowledge production & knowledge exchange
• The literature of Igbo writers in translation
• Trade and the development of Igbo towns & cities: Onitsha, Aba & Abiriba
• The Nsukka school of art & international gallery spaces
• Igbo Business incubation systems and Apprenticeship

Organisers: The Igbo Conference, in association with the Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria Nsukka; SOAS University of London and City, University of London

Venue: The conference will be held at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, from July 2-4, 2020 at the Princess Alexandra Auditorium (PAA).

Participants are welcome to present in English or Igbo, but if presenting in Igbo we ask that that an English Language translation is provided as well.
Please submit abstracts of up to 250 words including the paper title, your name, current position, institutional affiliation (where applicable), email address and phone number no later than 31st January 2020. To submit visit www.igboconference.com/submit and follow the directions.
We cannot guarantee that abstracts submitted via email will be read / considered. Please submit your abstract via the submission page at www.igboconference.com/submit
Panel Submissions

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Associate Professor of Sociology/Anthropology, Dept. of African-American and African Diaspora Studies, Columbia University

The newly established Department of African-American and African Diaspora Studies (AAADS) at Columbia University invites applications for a tenure track or tenured position at the level of Associate Professor to begin on July 1, 2020. AAADS welcomes applicants in anthropology or sociology whose work in the United States and/or elsewhere in the African Diaspora cuts across fields and disciplines in areas including—but not limited to—Black migration, transnational communities, and internationalism; Black feminism and/or LGBT studies; and, urban social movements, political economy, and racial formation. The successful applicant must demonstrate a robust research agenda in Black urban studies and be willing to teach and mentor students at the
undergraduate, Master’s, and Ph.D. levels. This is also an opportunity to participate in the development and implementation of AAADS’s Ph.D. program.

Applicants should send a cover letter, curriculum vitae, three letters of recommendation, and a publication sample. The search committee will begin reviewing applications on December 10, 2019, and will continue to consider applications until the position is filled.

For more information and to apply, please go to:
http://pa334.peopleadmin.com/postings/XXXX

The search committee is especially interested in candidates, who through their teaching, research, and service, will contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community. Columbia University is an Equal Opportunity/Disability/Veteran employer.

Monday, November 4, 2019

Sharjah Biennial 2021: PreSs Release

For Immediate Release
4 November 2019 

Sharjah Art Foundation Announces the Late Okwui Enwezor 
as Curator of Sharjah Biennial 15

Foundation Director Hoor Al Qasimi to Co-Curate Alongside Working Group Members Tarek Abou El Fetouh, Ute Meta Bauer, Salah M. Hassan and Chika Okeke-Agulu, with the Support of an Advisory Committee Including David Adjaye, John Akomfrah and Christine Tohmé

SB15 Opens March 2021 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

Sharjah Art Foundation (SAF) in Sharjah, UAE, today announced the renowned critic and curator Okwui Enwezor (1963–2019) as curator of the next Sharjah Biennial, opening in March 2021. Enwezor conceived the 15th edition of the Sharjah Biennial (SB15), entitled Thinking Historically in the Present, as a platform to reflect on the past fourteen editions of the Biennial and to consider the future of the biennial model. In accordance with Enwezor’s wishes, SB15 will be realized with the support of Sharjah Art Foundation Director Hoor Al Qasimi as co-curator alongside a working group of Enwezor’s longtime collaborators: curator Tarek Abou El Fetouh; professor and Founding Director of NTU CCA Singapore Ute Meta Bauer; art historian and Cornell University professor Salah M. Hassan; and art historian and Princeton University professor Chika Okeke-Agulu. Al Qasimi and the SB15 Working Group will oversee the development and implementation of Okwui's curatorial concept in collaboration with an advisory committee composed of architect Sir David Adjaye, artist John Akomfrah and Ashkal Alwan Director Christine Tohmé, who will provide additional consultation on the Biennial.  

In his written plans for SB15, which he began developing in spring 2018, Enwezor envisioned the “Sharjah Biennial as a module with which to deal with the disruptive power of artistic monolingualism but also as horizon of the possible to conceive another theoretical space for ‘Thinking Historically in the Present.’”

“It is difficult to overstate the tremendous impact Okwui Enwezor had on contemporary art and its institutions. His visionary work internationalized art world paradigms and laid out an ambitious intellectual project that has shaped the development of so many initiatives and institutions, including the Sharjah Biennial and Sharjah Art Foundation. On a personal level, Okwui’s documenta was deeply influential to my own understanding of the urgent need to create a platform for art and ideas in this region of the world,” said Al Qasimi. “It was an enormous privilege to have been able to call Okwui a colleague and a friend. Together with his close collaborators who have joined the SB15 Working Group and Advisory Committee, we are honored to bring Okwui’s vision for the Biennial to fruition in Sharjah. Our hope is that SB15 will serve as a platform to further explore and expand on his curatorial and intellectual legacy.”

Continuing the Sharjah Biennial’s support for artists from the MENASA region and beyond with an internationally recognized platform for exhibition and experimentation, SB15 will bring together a range of works by contemporary artists, including major commissions, large-scale public installations, performances and films. On view in Sharjah Art Foundation buildings and public spaces across the city’s arts and heritage areas as well as other spaces across the emirate of Sharjah, SB15 will explore the impact of the last fourteen editions of the Sharjah Biennial and the future of the biennial model around the world. 

The 2020 edition of Sharjah Art Foundation’s annual March Meeting, a three-day program convening artists, curators and arts practitioners from around the world to discuss vital issues in contemporary art, will inaugurate SB15. Organized around the title and theme of SB15, Thinking Historically in the Present, MM 2020 will focus on the 30th anniversary of the Sharjah Biennial, bringing together former Sharjah Biennial curators, artistic directors and artists as well art historians and critics to examine the role of the Biennial in the region and in the global contemporary art scene. Details about the MM 2020 program, running from 21 to 23 March 2020, will be available in late 2019. Further information about the SB15 concept, artists and projects will be announced in the coming months.  

SB15 Working Group member Salah M. Hassan remarked, “Okwui always believed in the Sharjah Biennial as a model for displacing older, Western-based biennials by offering a cutting edge and globally relevant alternative.” Hence, this upcoming edition of the SB15, according to Hassan, “represents Okwui’s insistence on the art exhibition as a platform for engaging with history, politics and society and how these shape our global present.”  

Sharjah Art Foundation’s announcement of Sharjah Biennial 15 follows Okwui Enwezor’s bequest of his papers and library to Sharjah’s Africa Institute, of which Al Qasimi is also President and Salah M. Hassan is Director. SB15 Advisory Board member Sir David Adjaye has been commissioned to design the campus of this interdisciplinary academic research institute and think tank, slated for completion in 2023. 


About Okwui Enwezor

Okwui Enwezor (1963, Calabar, Nigeria–2019, Munich) was a curator, critic and art historian. Enwezor’s curatorial projects alternated between ambitious international exhibitions that sought to define their moment and historically driven, encyclopedic museum shows. His major projects include the Venice Biennale (2015), Paris Triennale (2012), Gwangju Biennale (2008), Seville Biennial (2006) and documenta 11 (1998–2002), and he served as Artistic Director of the Second Johannesburg Biennale (1997). Enwezor’s groundbreaking museum exhibitions include Postwar: Art Between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945–1965, Haus der Kunst, Munich (2016); Rise and Fall of Apartheid: Photography and the Bureaucracy of Everyday Life, International Center of Photography, New York (2012); Archive Fever: Uses of the Document in Contemporary Art, International Center of Photography, New York (2008); Snap Judgments: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography, International Center of Photography, New York (2006); The Short Century: Independence and Liberation Movements in Africa, 1945–1994, Museum Villa Stuck, Munich (2001); and In/Sight: African Photographers, 1940–Present, Guggenheim Museum, New York  (1996). 

Enwezor served as Director, Haus der Kunst, Munich (2011–2018) and Dean of Academic Affairs and Senior Vice-President, San Francisco Art Institute (2005–2009). He was Global Distinguished Professor in the Department of Art History, New York University (2013) and Kirk Varnedoe Visiting Professor at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University (2012). Among his publications are Postwar: Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945–1965 (Prestel Publishing, 2017), which he co-edited; Rise and Fall of Apartheid: Photography and the Bureaucracy of Everyday Life (Prestel Publishing, 2013); Contemporary African Art Since 1980 (Damiani, 2010); Antinomies of Art and Culture: Modernity, Postmodernity, Contemporaneity (Duke University Press, 2009); and Reading the Contemporary: African Art from Theory to the Market (Iniva, 1999). In 1994, he co-founded NKA: Journal of Contemporary African Art.


About Hoor Al Qasimi 

Hoor Al Qasimi is President and Director of Sharjah Art Foundation. Her recent curatorial projects include solo exhibitions of the works of Amal Kenawy (2018), Hassan Sharif (2017), Yayoi Kusama (2016), Robert Breer (2016), Farideh Lashai (2016), Rasheed Araeen (2014) and Susan Hefuna (2014). She was co-curator for Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige: Two Suns in a Sunset (2016) and major surveys such as When Art Becomes Liberty: The Egyptian Surrealists (1938 –1965) (2016) and The Khartoum School: The Making of the Modern Art Movement in Sudan (1945–Present) (2016–2017). Co-curator of Sharjah Biennial 6 (2003), she has since continued as Biennial Director. She curated the UAE National Pavilion, Venice Biennale (2015) and will also serve as the curator of the second Lahore Biennale, opening in 2020.

President of the International Biennial Association; Chair of the Advisory Board, College of Fine Arts and Design, University of Sharjah; and President of The Africa Institute, Sharjah; Al Qasimi serves on the Board of Directors for MoMA PS1, New York; Kunst-Werke Berlin e. V.; Ashkal Alwan, Beirut; and the Sharjah Architecture Triennial as well as the advisory boards for Khoj, New Delhi and Darat al Funun, Amman. She is also a member of the Prince Claus Award Committee (2016–present).

About the SB15 Working Group

Tarek Abou El Fetouh is an independent curator who has established innovative initiatives in the Arab world and sought to develop conversations among practitioners both regionally and internationally. 

Ute Meta Bauer is a curator, editor (Afterall magazine), Founding Director of the NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore and a professor at the School of Art, Design and Media at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. 

Salah M. Hassan is Director of The Africa Institute, Sharjah, UAE, and Goldwin Smith Professor in the Africana Studies and Research Center and the Department of the History of Art and Visual Studies, Cornell University, Ithaca, US. He is an art historian, art critic, curator and founding editor of Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art.

Chika Okeke-Agulu specializes in indigenous, modern and contemporary African and African Diaspora art history and theory. He is a professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Art and Archaeology at Princeton University. He is co-editor of Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art and maintains the blog Ọfọdunka.


About the SB15 Advisory Committee

Sir David Adjaye OBE is recognized as a leading architect of his generation. In 2000, he formed his studio, Adjaye Associates, with offices in London, New York and Accra and projects spanning North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. His largest project to date, the $540 million Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, opened on the National Mall in Washington, DC in autumn 2016.
 
John Akomfrah is a respected artist and filmmaker whose works are characterized by their investigations into memory, post-colonialism, temporality and aesthetics and often explore the experiences of migrant diasporas globally. 

Christine Tohmé is the Founding Director of Ashkal Alwan, a non-profit organization established in 1993 in Beirut that aims to support contemporary artistic and cultural practices through its numerous initiatives. She curated Sharjah Biennial 13: Tamawuj in 2017. 


About Sharjah Art Foundation

Sharjah Art Foundation is an advocate, catalyst and producer of contemporary art within the Emirate of Sharjah and the surrounding region, in dialogue with the international arts community. Under the leadership of founder Hoor Al Qasimi, a curator and artist, the foundation advances an experimental and wide-ranging programmatic model that supports the production and presentation of contemporary art, preserves and celebrates the distinct culture of the region and encourages a shared understanding of the transformational role of art. The foundation’s core initiatives include the long-running Sharjah Biennial, featuring contemporary artists from around the world; the annual March Meeting, a convening of international arts professionals and artists; grants and residencies for artists, curators and cultural producers; ambitious and experimental commissions; and a range of travelling exhibitions and scholarly publications. Established in 2009 to expand programmes beyond the Sharjah Biennial, which launched in 1993, the foundation is a critical resource for artists and cultural organisations in the Gulf and a conduit for local, regional and international developments in contemporary art. The foundation’s deep commitment to developing and sustaining the cultural life and heritage of Sharjah is reflected through year-round exhibitions, performances, screenings and educational programmes in the city of Sharjah and across the Emirate, often hosted in historic buildings that have been repurposed as cultural and community centres. A growing collection reflects the foundation’s support of contemporary artists in the realisation of new work and its recognition of the contributions made by pioneering modern artists from the region and around the world. Sharjah Art Foundation is a legally independent public body established by Emiri Decree and supported by government funding, grants from national and international nonprofits and cultural organisations, corporate sponsors and individual patrons. All exhibitions and events are free and open to the public.


About Sharjah

Sharjah is the third-largest of the seven United Arab Emirates, and the only one bridging the Arabian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. Reflecting the deep commitment to the arts, architectural preservation and cultural education embraced by its ruler, Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Sharjah is home to more than 20 museums and has long been known as the cultural hub of the United Arab Emirates. In 1998, it was named UNESCO's 'Arab Capital of Culture' and has been designated the UNESCO ‘World Book Capital’ for the year 2019.


Media Contacts

Sharjah Art Foundation:
Alyazeyah Al Reyaysa
+971(0)65444113
alyazeyah@sharjahart.org 

Resnicow and Associates:
Sarah Morris, smorris@rensicow.com, +1-212-671-5165
Delaney Smith, dsmith@resnicow.com, +1-212-671-5160
Maria May, mmay@resnicow.com, +1-214-207-6082 



Sunday, November 3, 2019

Okwui Enwezor, Curator of 15th Sharjah Biennial (2021)

Okwui Enwezor. Photo: Chika Okeke-Agulu



Okwui Enwezor is the posthumous curator of 15th Sharjah Biennial (2021), The New York Times has just announced.
READ THE STORY