PhD supervisor: Tamar Garb
Working title for PhD: 'Nigerian Modernism as an African epistemology'
Based on archival sources my thesis examines the inherent visual logic of significant Nigerian artistic positions of the early 20th century. The construction of images in the work of two Nigerian artists of national and international importance, the Oyo-Yorùbá artist Aina Onabolu and the Anambra-Igbo artist Ben Enwonwu are key to examining the nature and roots of Nigerian artistic modernity. Their engagement with specific Nigerian and European cultural codes and knowledge systems, the permeability of divergent epistemologies and the options arising from transcultural discursivity are paramount to the development of modern Nigerian art history. The exploration inevitably leads to the limitations of postcolonial discourses, which will a point of discussion.
My PhD is fully funded by one of UCL’s Graduate Research Scholarships, and is being supervised by Professor Tamar Garb.
My research interests include Early African Modernisms, African Epistemologies, Fragmentary Archives in curatorial and artistic and research practice, Transcultural methodologies.
Publications, Conferences, Talks:
- ‘Decolonising Nigerian Modernism: Ben Enwonwu’s ‘Identity in Politics’, Tate Papers, Issue 30, Autumn 2018
- ‘Positioning Nigerian Modernism, Tate Papers, Issue 30, Autumn 2018, co-editor with Christopher Griffin, with texts by Emmanuel Iduma, Christian Kravagna, Matthew Lezcnar and David Murphy
- 'Nigerian Modernism: Reflections on time and Scale’, Bea Gassmann de Sousa and Prof. Frank Ugiomoh, in: “museum global. Microhistories of an Ex-centric Modernism”, eds. Susanne Gaensheimer, Kathrin Beßen, Doris Krystof , Isabelle Malz, Maria Müller-Schareck, Kunstsammlung NRW, K20, 2018/19
- Bea Gassmann de Sousa (2017) The Family Archive as Political Site, Third Text, 31:4, 499-532, DOI: 10.1080/09528822.2017.1411087
- ‘Archives in Nigeria’, Bea Gassmann de Sousa and Iheanyi Onwuegbucha in conversation, curated by Kerryn Greenberg in memory of Bisi Silva, CCA Lagos, 1:54 Forum, October 2019
- ‘What Uli Beier Loves’, The African Art Collection of Uli Beier, Conference ‘Mining Collections’, Iwalewahaus, University of Bayreuth, June 2018
- Ben Enwonwu: The Family Archive as Political Site, ‘Positioning Nigerian Modernism’, Conference, Tate Modern, 2017
- ‘Positioning Nigerian Modernism’, Conference, Tate Modern, 2017, co-convener with Kerryn Greenberg with Keynote speaker Chika Okeke-Agulu
- The Agency Gallery, since 1996, Focus: New Media Art, Installation, Performance, Soundart
- A Portrait in Fragments: Theresa Hak Kyung Cha 1951-1982, Curator, KCC, London 2013