‘Time, Trade & Travel’ opening in Accra

Panel discussion with Dorothy Akpene Amenuke, Bernard Akoi-Jackson, Aukje Koks, Serge Clottey, Jeremiah Quarshie, Rikki Wemega-Kwaku and Odile Tevie in the background


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Overview ‘Hollandaise’

Billie Zangewa, Evelyn's Island Escape, 2012.

Abdoulaye Konaté, African Feast (the men and the marionettes), 2012.

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Report Zachary Formwalt interviewed by Sven Lütticken

On the final day of ‘Time, Trade & Travel’ Zachary Formwalt was interviewed by art historian and critic Sven Lütticken. After a brief introduction to Formwalt’s artistic practice and interests, a fragment of his newest video ‘A Projective Geometry’ was screened. The video was also part of the exhibition ‘Time, Trade & Travel’ in SMBA. The film testifies to Formwalt’s investigation of the history of a railway in present-day Ghana. The railway was built in the 19th century by Britain to connect Sekondi to the inland gold mine in Tarkwa as a facility to create a connection with the worldwide market.
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Overview ‘Time, Trade & Travel’

Overview of the work of Bernard Akoi-Jackson.

Overview of the work of Bernard Akoi-Jackson.

Dorothy Akpene Amenuke, How Far How Near, 2012, jute, cloth, kente and other fabrics.

Dorothy Akpene Amenuke, How Far How Near, 2012.

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Exhibition ‘Time, Trade & Travel’

Artists: Bernard Akoi-Jackson, Dorothy Akpene Amenuke, Serge Clottey, Zachary Formwalt, Iris Kensmil, Aukje Koks, Navid Nuur, Jeremiah Quarshie, kari-kacha seid’ou and Katarina Zdjelar.

‘Time, Trade & Travel’ set the participating artists on a quest for the historical encounters between Europeans and Africans, in which trade and the concomitant cultural exchange receive particular attention. From their manifold and individual perspectives the artists examined the ways in which the economic and cultural relations of the past are continuing to have an effect in the present. The show explicitly relates to aspects of globalization and transnationalism reflected in the field of contemporary art.

The exhibition is the result of a collaboration with the Nubuke Foundation in Accra, Ghana, to which the show will travel in November.

Click here to read more about ‘Time, Trade & Travel.
Click here to download SMBA Newsletter #129. Besides an introduction and entries on the works of the participating artists, the newsletter includes a contribution on the work and teaching of art tutor kari-kacha seid’ou of the College of Art in Kumasi, by anthropologist Dr. Rhoda Woets, who did extensive research into modern art in Ghana.

Overview ‘Bart Groenendaal, Stefan Ruitenbeek, Quinsy Gario’


Overview 'Bart Groenendaal, Stefan Ruitenbeek, Quinsy Gario'

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Exhibition ‘Bart Groenendaal, Stefan Ruitenbeek, Quinsy Gario’

Bart Groenendaal - The Paradox of Being Taken Seriously (2011)


The current exhibition by Gario, Groenendaal and Ruitenbeek can be seen as a break for introspection within the Project ’1975’ programme. This time, attention turns to the Netherlands. The presentation combines two exhibitions and an essay that each focus on cultural systems of classification, seeming certainties and the urge for cultural freedom.

The Paradox of Being Taken Seriously by Bart Groenendaal was filmed during therapy sessions with traumatised refugees who have either been granted, or are awaiting, asylum in the Netherlands. As the film unfolds, it gradually reveals the workings of a subtle power game between the Dutch therapists and their African patients and the emergence, with no evident provocation, of a growing uncertainty regarding the therapists’ unquestioning assumptions about certainties concerning their own country.

In the film Ancient Amateurs Stefan Ruitenbeek utilizes his artistic freedom to create art in the domain of porn. Under Ruitenbeek’s direction, the actors and actresses then concentrated their efforts on bringing an unusual narrative to life on-screen. Through the haze of porn images and chaos on the set, we see how the people involved in the film, including the artist, seize upon this curious exercise in an attempt to escape cultural classifications.

Cultural theorist and theatre maker Quinsy Gario examines Wim Verstappen and Pim de la Parra’s erotic blockbuster Blue Movie (1971) in his essay in the SMBA Newsletter. Blue Movie marks a key moment in the Netherlands’ increasing perception of itself as a sexually open and tolerant nation. Gario analyses the film against this background and raises a number of criticisms of the much-acclaimed Dutch self-image.

Click here to read more on the exhibition and download the SMBA Newsletter here.

Frieze on ‘Vincent Vulsma – A Sign of Autumn’


Installation view A Sign of Autumn, 2011.

Click here to read Nick Aikens’ review on ‘Vincent Vulsma – A Sign of Autumn’ and Project ’1975′, as published in Frieze Magazine Issue 144.