In the wake of ongoing anti-Black racism, discrimination, and police brutality and killings Madlozi Art Gallery presents the exhibition ‘BE REAL BLACK, FOR ME’ – a homage to Black lives and bodies universally as sites of resilience, tenderness, dignity, and love – not media spectacle, humiliation or repeated trauma.
Can we go back and remember Blackness as the beginning, as our shared universal origin – a seamlessly loving experience, and the memory of a melanated cloak surrounding our collective bodies like a refuge for healing and restoration our spirits – a place we should never forget even as we fight for justice and to belong?
The artworks and Diaspora-wide narrative of the exhibition foregrounds the inter-connectedness of Blackness as we respond to the heightened violence accompanying anti-black racism and interrogate the significant moment we are currently living in – a time of living in confinement mentally and physically and struggling to breathe between two life-threatening pandemics. One is preventable but both are pervasive, deadly and make Black life a perilous act of survival, and breathing-while-Black a felony.
Artists and curators of colour are themselves severely impacted professionally by racism and it’s limitations on their lives and work in an industry notoriously segmented and resistant to transformation. In this exhibition they articulate the freedom of creating and showing art in a context that embraces their talent, voices and cultural identities. Twenty international artists from across the Black and African Diaspora converge to explore the universality of Blackness in ‘BE REAL BLACK, FOR ME’.
Participating artists from Africa, the United States & the Caribbean are:
Patrick Earl Hammie, Nu Barreto, Williams Chechet, Andrae Green, Serge Diakota, Yvanovich Mbaya, Lisolomzi Pikoli, Nathalie Djakou Kassi, David Chinyama, Priya Green, Saleh Lo, Vincent Osemwegie, Johnson Uwadinma, Yvanovich Mbaya, Skumbuzo `Skubalisto’ Vabaza, Louis Oke- Agbo, Linda Sangaret, Muzi Ndlela, Lateef Olajumoke, Washington Kirika, Gadi Ramadhani.
Together they create a powerful and unique inter-generational narrative, a conversation that challenges the over-simplified, violent media constructions of the Black body and colonialism’s heinous gaze. Blackness is explored as a deeply personal yet profoundly political act and their works speak to diverse cultural origins and peeling back the myriad layers, themes and complexities of identifying as Black to explore just what makes living in our bodies such a violently contested, yet beautifully diverse, vital act.
The Exhibition ‘BE REAL BLACK, FOR ME’ opens 04th of July to 12th September 2020 online on Artsy.net at the link here: www.artsy.net