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Disguise, Pt.2 : Zina Saro-Wiwa and Adejoke Tugbiyele



A conversation with two artists and the curator from Disguise: Masks and Global African Art, on view at the Brooklyn Museum April 29-September 18, 2016. The exhibition connects the work of twenty-five contemporary artists with historical African masquerade, using play and provocation to invite viewers to think critically about their world and their place within it. By putting on a mask and becoming someone else, artists reveal hidden realities about society, including those of power, class, and gender, to suggest possibilities for the future. This is the second episode in a two-part series on the Disguise show. The exhibition presents contemporary work in dialogue with historical objects from the collections of the Seattle Art Museum and the Brooklyn Museum within an immersive and lively installation of video, digital, sound, and installation art, as well as photography and sculpture. Zina Saro-Wiwa is a video artist, film-maker and curator. She creates video installations, documentaries, photographs and experimental films. She also works with food, creating recipes and staging feast performances. Saro-Wiwa’s interest lies in mapping emotional landscapes. She explores personal experiences, carefully recording their choreography, making tangible the space between internal experience and outward performance as well as bringing cross-cultural and environmental/geographic considerations to bear on these articulations. The slippery dynamics between “truth”, “reality” and “performance” lie at the heart of her video performance work. Though brought up in the UK, Saro-Wiwa lives and works between Brooklyn, New York and the Niger Delta in Nigeria where she has set up her own contemporary art gallery called Boys' Quarters Project Space in the city of Port Harcourt. Saro-Wiwa has been commissioned by the Menil Collection and Seattle Art Museum. She has had work shown at the Pulitzer Foundation, Moderna Museet in Stockholm, Stevenson Gallery, Goodman Gallery, Guggenheim Bilbao, Nikolaj Kunsthal, Tate Britain and many other institutions. Her first ever solo musuem show Did You Know We Taught Them How To Dance? went up at Blaffer Art Museum in Houston in 2015 and will go on to Krannert Art Museum in November 2016. Her published monograph for the show is published by Washington Press and is available at the Brooklyn Museum book store, Frieze Art Fair NY and Amazon.com. Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1977 to Nigerian immigrants, and raised for seven years in Lagos Nigeria, award-winning artist/activist Adejoke Tugbiyele boldly, yet delicately weaves complex ideas about race, gender, sexuality, spirituality and migration. Her sculptural process combines the weaving of fibrous materials around light metal structures, producing abstract figurative forms with universal elements of androgyny, armor, flight, seduction, myth and mystery. Tugbiyele is the recipient of several awards including being named Foreign Policy’s 100 Leading Global Thinkers of 2015. In 2014, images of her sculptural works graced the first-ever United States publication of poetry by the African Poetry Book Fund, and that same year she appeared on CNN International as the first openly gay woman of Nigerian heritage to come out in the media. Tugbiyele received a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from The New Jersey Institute of Technology and a Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture from Maryland Institute College of Art. Her work is in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, The Newark Museum and in private collections in the United States and Hong Kong. Kevin D. Dumouchelle joined the Brooklyn Museum in 2007. He was promoted to Associate Curator for the Arts of Africa and the Pacific Islands in 2012, having served as Assistant Curator since 2008. In 2011 he conceived and curated African Innovations, the Museum’s first chronological and contextual installation of its African collection. This program is part of a radio series curated by Margaux Huille of 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair. Referencing the fifty-four countries that constitute the African continent, the title of 1:54 establishes the parameters of the fair’s ethos: as a platform that strives to represent multiplicity and showcase the diversity of contemporary African art and cultural production on an international stage. 1:54 New York 2016 showcases 17 exhibitors, presenting over 60 African and African diasporan artists at Pioneer Works, 6-8 May 2016.
 

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1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair

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The New York edition of the 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair showcases 17 exhibitors, presenting over 60 African and African diasporan artists.

Recordings of 1:54's many programs, artists, and related partners may be found on this page. 1:54 was initiated by Touria El Glaoui in 2013 in LondonMay 2016 marks the second edition of 1:54 New York, while 1:54 London ran its fourth consecutive year from the 5-9th of October 2016 at Somerset House.

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A reference to the fifty-four countries that constitute the African continent, the title of 1:54 establishes the parameters of the fair’s ethos: as a platform that strives to represent multiplicity and showcase the diversity of contemporary African art and cultural production on an international stage. The 2016 1:54 Art Fair is accompanied by an educational and artistic program curated by Koyo Kouoh and includes lectures, film screenings, and panel debates featuring leading international curators, artists, and art experts.


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