Writing Art History Since 2002

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FORUM, 1:54‘s critical conversations programme curated by Koyo Kouoh (Artistic Director, RAW Material Company, Dakar) returns to Somerset House in London, Thursday 15 to Sunday 18 October 2015. Have a look at the fresh-off-the-press programme!

1-54 FORUMABOVE: Nidhal Chamekh, ‘Entre les Choses No. 13’, From the series Entre les Choses, 2014, Graphite on cotton paper, 23 x 31 cm, Courtesy of Selma Feriani Gallery
Through a series of discussions, artist talks, keynote lectures, book launches and film screenings, FORUM will work to generate a wealth of discussion around artistic and intellectual relationships between the Maghreb or North Africa, and sub-Saharan Africa or ‘Black Africa’, as an interrogation of the Sahara as an imposed demarcation. Exploring, contrary to opinion, how ideas circulate and proliferate across this critical and fertile landscape. This focus will provide, via subjectivities connected to North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa, an entry point into topics such as the politics of identity, globalisation, artistic historiography, culture and tradition.
FORUM Film feeds into this directly, establishing a dialogue between thought and moving image, sound and the visual arts. The film programme will highlight video and film works by artists Zineb Sedira, Katia Kameli, Theo Eshetu, Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi, Jim Chuchu, Johan Thom, Yazid Oulab, Sonia Boyce, Nicène Kossentini, Zoulikha Bouabdellah and Em’kal Eyongakpa. 
With contributions from leading individuals working within artistic, academic and curatorial spheres, FORUM will work to address and reshape the conjectural differences between artists working in North Africa and those in sub-Saharan Africa. The opening keynote, delivered by Jihan El-Tahri, director, writer, producer and artist, will look to the impact of imposed boundaries on cultural practice. El-Tahri will touch on globalisation and migration as an introduction to the discussion ‘The 55th State’.
The series of artist talks will provide firsthand insight into this subject. Participants include Algerian artist Massinissa Selmani, honoured with a Special Mention at the 56th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale; Tunisian artist Nidhal Chamekh, also selected for the 56th International Art Exhibition; and South African artist Kemang Wa Lehulere, who’s first UK solo show opens at Gasworks in London this month. 
Due to greater demand, FORUM will now take place in the Main Portico Room located in Somerset House’s South Wing. Please note that while entry to FORUM is included in 1:54 admission tickets and 1:54 VIP passes, seat reservations must be made in advance via their Eventbrite page here.
FORUM London 2015 Full Programme:
Thursday 15 October 2015
12:00 – 13:00  FORUM Film
13:00 – 13:10  Opening Remarks by Koyo Kouoh: Curator of FORUM Programme
13:15 – 14:30  Keynote Address: Jihan El-Tahri: Delivered by Jihan El-Tahri, director, writer, producer and artist, with respondent Koyo Kouoh.
15:00 – 16:00  Artist Talk: Katia Kameli: Omar Berrada, writer, critic, and Co-Director of Dar al-Ma’mûn in Marrakech in conversation with artist Katia Kameli.
16:30 – 17:30  Gallery Talk: Antonia Carver, Fair Director of Art Dubai will be in conversation with discussants Rose Issa, curator, writer, and exhibition producer and Selma Feriani, Director of Selma Feriani Gallery in Sidi Bou Said, Tunisia.
Friday 16 October 2015
12:00 – 13:00  FORUM Film
13:30 – 14:30  Artist Talk: Massinissa Selmani: Sheikha Hoor Al-Qasimi, President and Director of the Sharjah Art Foundation in conversation with artist Massinissa Selmani.
15:00 – 16:00  In Focus: DIPTYK: Osei Bonsu, independent curator and researcher will be in conversation with Meryem Sebti, Editor-in-Chief of DIPTYK Magazine. Founded in 2009, DIPTYK serves to provide a unique perspective on the contemporary art scene in North Africa.
16:30 – 17:45  Discussion: The 55th State: Discussants Gilbert Achcar, Professor of Development Studies and International Relations at SOAS, University of London and Dr Andrew Arsan, University Lecturer in Modern Middle Eastern History at St John’s College, University of Cambridge will work to consider Lebanese migration into Africa. The session will be moderated by Omar Berrada, writer, critic, and Co-Director of Daral-Ma’mûn in Marrakech. 
Saturday 17 October 2015
12:00 – 13:00  FORUM Film
13:15 – 14:30  Book Launch: Body Talk: Feminism, Sexuality and the Body in the Work of Six African Artists (2015): Book launch and conversation with exhibition artist Zoulikha Bouabdellah and Body Talk’s curator Koyo Kouoh.
15:00 – 16:00  Artist Talk: Richard Mudariki: Marc Stanes, Co-Founder of EBONY Curated, South Africa and Curator of Momart EG, Equatorial Guinea in conversation with artist Richard Mudariki
16:00 – 17:30  Artists Talk: Kemang Wa Lehulere and Kader Attia: Omar Kholeif, Curator at Whitechapel Gallery, London, Visiting Curator at Cornerhouse and HOME, Manchester, and Senior Editor at Ibraaz in conversation with artists Kemang Wa Lehulere and Kader Attia
Sunday 18 October 2015
12:00 – 13:00  FORUM Film
13:30 – 14:30  Keynote Address: Bassam El Baroni: Delivered by Bassam El Baroni, independent curator, researcher, and Curator of EVA International 2014, Ireland’s Biennial of Contemporary Art.
15:00 – 16:00  Artist Talk: Theo Eshetu: Dexter Wimberly, independent curator and Director of Strategic Planning at Independent Curators International (ICI) in conversation with artist Theo Eshetu.
16:30 – 17:30  Artist Talk: Nidhal Chamekh: Omar Berrada, writer, critic, and Co-Director of Dar al-Ma’mûn in Marrakech in conversation with artist Nidhal Chamekh. 
For more information, visit 1-54’s website.

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