How do contemporary African artists, curators and writers deal with the question of blackness in our work? How does blackness inform the creative process?
I’m really looking forward to sharing these discussions in an event titled “Blackness in Contemporary Art Practice” taking place online at the Tate Modern on Tuesday, 2 June.
Join us as we unpack these questions and consider African and diaspora experiences of blackness through relationships with spirituality, ancestry, (settler) colonialism and womanhood. The synopsis of my presentation is below.
The responsibility of the black artist to time
Concerning its relation to power, politics often changes name and place but is otherwise static. Aesthetics (art, language, literature, poetry, etc.) is on the other hand by nature always in flux. The aesthetic world, in which the black artist creates her work, is a world that also grapples with power but at its most expanding it moulds power rather than exacts it. Significantly, therefore, the difference between politics and aesthetics is time, the static and the mouldable. The word black in today’s world is increasingly, statically, political. The word artist is on the other hand, as always, aesthetic. What does that mean then for the black artist? Discussing the dangers in inflexibly politicising blackness, my talk explores the role and responsibilities of the black artist toward time and the opportunities of new worlds.
Speakers will be myself, Nomusa Makhubu and Suzana Sousa. The panel will be moderated by Portia Malatjie.