Bisi Silva, independent curator and artistic director of CCA, Lagos, has been appointed as artistic director of the 10th edition of the Bamako Encounters: Biennale of African Photography, which is to take place from 31 October to 31 December 2015.
Bisi Silva is an independent curator and the founder/director of Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos (CCA,Lagos) which opened in December 2007.
For the 10th Edition of the Bamako Encounters titled TELLING TIME, Silva plans to explore the complex and multifaceted relationship between images and time, taking both the country’s rich tradition of storytelling and its recent political upheavals as points of departure. “Mali is an extraordinary country,” Silva observes. “Since my first visit to Bamako in 2001, the city has animated my understanding of photography’s vital role in exploring notions of time—be it from an aesthetic, political, or theoretical perspective. The Bamako Encounters is the most important platform for African photography and I am honoured by the opportunity to draw on the working relationships with artists and organisations in the city as well as from across the continent, that I have built over the years. I plan to develop a robust programme that highlights local practices, and situates them within continental and global contexts.”
Regarding Bisi Silva’s appointment, the biennale’s Executive Director Samuel Sidibé remarks, “The forthcoming edition of the biennale marks the tenth anniversary of this important event. We look forward to both working with Bisi Silva on the realisation of her exciting vision for the next biennale, and to the possibilities the event offers for future generations of African photographers.”
Bisi Silva was co-curator of ‘The Progress of Love’, a transcontinental collaboration across three venues in US and Nigeria, in 2012. She was co-curator of J.D.Okhai Ojeikere: Moments of Beauty’, Kiasma, Helsinki (April – Nov. 2011). She was one of the curators for the Dak’Art Biennale, Senegal (2006). A frequent participant in international conferences and symposia, Silva has published in journals and art magazines including Artforum, Third Text, The Exhibitionist, and ArtsouthAfrica. Most recently, she edited the comprehensive monograph, J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere published by CCA, Lagos (2014). Bisi Silva sits on the editorial/advisory boards of Art South Africa, N.Paradoxa: International Feminist Art Journal, and ContemporaryAnd. Silva was a member of the international jury for the Pinchuk Art Centre’s Future Generation Art Prize (2014), as well as the 55th Venice Biennale (2013).
Samuel Sidibé has been the Executive Director of the Bamako Encounters since 2009. He is also the Director of the National Museum of Mali, a position he has held since 1987.
About The Bamako Encounters (Rencontres de Bamako), Biennale of African Photography
Founded in 1994, the Bamako Encounters is collaboratively produced and organised by Mali’s Ministry of Culture and Institut Français. The biennale is the first and principal international platform dedicated to African photography and lens-based media on the continent. In its aim to promote and assess photography-based practices from local and international perspectives, the Bamako Encounters operates as a platform for presenting artwork and cultivating professional relationships among artists, curators, art historians, collectors, and the public more broadly. In addition to its emphasis on engaging local cultural centres, galleries, foundations, and schools, the biennale routinely collaborates with international foundations and cultural organisations to position Bamako as an important site for analysing and sharing recent developments in lens-based media.
The open call for applicants for the 10th Bamako Encounters 2015 is open until 31 March.
Application information: www.rencontres-bamako.com