Curated by renowned London-based curator, Mark Sealy MBE, the FotoFest Biennial 2020, African Cosmologies: Photography, Time, and the Other brings together over 30 artists from around the globe whose works challenge traditional notions of Blackness and transnational histories in relation to concepts of liberty, rights, and representation. Taking its cues from John Coltranes avant-garde jazz oeuvre, wherein formal modernisms of the past are made complex by radical imagination and black-futurity, this presentation of diverse ideas, artistic approaches, and material histories proposes a cosmological exploration of Africa and the contemporary African diaspora; one that defies easy categorization and spatial and temporal boundaries. In their unique practices, the featured artists turn an eye to social, cultural, and political conditions that inform and influence concepts of representation as they pertain to image production and circulation in Africa and beyond. These artists question the ways in which subjectivity is constructed and deconstructed by the camera, and in the process, reveal legacies of resistance by those who defy traditional ideas of sexual, racial, gender-based, and other marginalized identities.Mark Sealy writes, Photography for those locked out of the means of image production becomes an impossible barrier to the right to full and equal human recognition. Especially if existence alone is an act of survival.The FotoFest Biennial 2020 takes place from March 8 April 19, 2020 in Houston TX.
Produced in conjunction with the FotoFest Biennial 2020 exhibition, the African Cosmologies book will feature essays by leading scholars in the fields of contemporary art, photography, and cultural studies. Images of installations, photography, film, and video works by artists will highlight the range of interdisciplinary approaches that are represented in the Biennial exhibition. African Cosmologies: Photography, Time, and the Other is co-edited by Autograph ABP Director, Mark Sealy MBE, and FotoFest Executive Director, Steven Evans.