Paper: The Shadows Took Shape


The article We Want the Funk: What is Afrofuturism to Africa was reworked and published in The Shadows Took Shape exhibition catalogue from the Harlem Studio Museum. The exhibition, curated by Naima Kieth & Zoe Whitley, presented a very large collection of work defined around both being and the notions of AfroFuturism. The exhibition addresses the on going intersections of AfroFuturism and global contemporary art practice.

As one of seven contributes, along with Samuel Delany, Kodwo Eshun, Thelma Golden, Paul Miller (aka DJ Spooky the Subliminal Kid), Alondara Nelson and Peter Shapiro. I wrote specifically around my research on African Technology Arts practice. In it I address not only what AfroFuturism means for Africa, but look at artists such myth and aesthetic mechanism that reflect those of AfroFuturism, in the work of Kenya’s Wanuri Kahiu & Just A Band; South Africa’s Spoek Mathambo & Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum; Egypt’s KhaledHafez (who is not in my region really, but I was lucky enough to meet in Cairo in 2013 at the DiEgy festival).

The article expands on the use of aesthetic mechanism in African technology arts, that strongly reflect the mechanism of AfroFuturism. Their use are strongly related to finding a voice and position within a global culture around networked and technology media. Artist are using mechanism to speak to issues around economic globalisation and Africa’s historical and current positioning with in this.



Page showing stills of Pumzi a “Afrofuturist” film of Kenyan Wanuri Kahiu.

Some of the purple in the page of my article, the catalogue is beautifully produced with a purple and gold colour theme running through it.

Discuss - No Comments

No comments yet. Why not add one below?

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Note marked required (*) fields.