The Bartlett School of Architecture


Ramaging the Lines - Dr Ikem Stanley Okoye

28 April 2022, 6:00 pm–7:30 pm

Mary Sinclair, 1936. Procession in mourning for King George V

In this Situated Architecture Seminar, Dr Ikem Stanley Okoye accounts for the silenced in architectural histories, through a lens of African matriliny and colonial reconfiguration, and asks how architecture can become a space for decolonial poetics and their politics.

This event is free.

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The Bartlett School of Architecture

Ramaging the Lines?: Architecture, History, Inheritance, Gender, Property

Historical and theoretical accounts of influence or intellectual filiation - of patrons and the buildings they commissioned; architects and the buildings they produced; or theorists and historians and the buildings they selected as subjects of study - determine what is excluded in justifying a particular narrative from the messiness of the real. 

Until recently, architectural histories in the Global North have traced what is bequeathed mainly through an assertion of favored heroic predecessors. But what does it mean, instead, to pay as much attention to the silenced - e.g. attending to the women left out in particular constructions? Focused on African spaces of matriliny that were challenged by colonial reconfigurations, Dr Okoye's talk will ask what their contradictory constructions say about architecture and its history as a possible ground for decolonial poetics and their politics.

Please note this lecture has been rescheduled from Monday 21 February to Thursday 28 April 2022. 


Ikem Stanley Okoye is Associate Professor in the Department of Art History at the University of Delaware, and is joint faculty in the Africana Department. Currently a Canadian Centre for Architecture/Mellon Researcher on the 'Centring Africa' initiative, he is working on a writing project, 'Where was Modernism'. He has also held fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton; the Center for Modern Oriental Studies, Berlin; and the Advanced Study Center at Michigan, among others.

His essays on art, architecture and the landscape are published in journals including Interventions - Journal of Postcolonial Studies; Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians; Critical Interventions, and NKA; and in book anthologies including Radical Pedagogies; and Cultural Heritage Landscapes in Sub Saharan Africa. His work sometimes focuses also on early colonial Nigeria, as is so for the long in-process book Hideous Architecture. Dr Okoye also maintains a practice in architecture as Ikem Okoye + Anubis Architecture.

Image: Mary Sinclair, 1936. Procession in mourning for King George V. Asante Kingdom, present-day Ghana. Copyright, Trustees of the British Museum