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References in periodicals archive ?
It's an attitude that runs through all the projects that have by coincidence--each has been about three years in the making --been exhibited in the last year: Purple (2017), a six-channel video work first shown at the Barbican last October; Precarity (2017), a three-channel video about the jazz musician Charles 'Buddy' Bolden that premiered at Prospect.4 in New Orleans last year, and 'Signs of Empire', a survey--the artist's first in the United States--at the New Museum in New York this summer, which also included films from Akomfrah's Black Audio Film Collective period (1982-98).
He first came to public attention in the early 1980s as a founding member of the influential Black Audio Film Collective, a group of black British multimedia artists and filmmakers.
One consistent aspect of Akomfrah's practice (and the practice of the Black Audio Film Collective, of which he was a founding member) has been to take a public archive and alter it, unmoor it, interfere with it in some fundamental way.
Tomorrow: Isaac Julien/ Sankofa July 11: Amber Films (introduced by Ellin Hare); July 18: Black Audio Film Collective (introduced by David Lawson); July 25: Supersonic Festival workshop (sold out); August 1: ICO Essentials: Protest.
EXHIBITION: Final days of The Ghosts of Songs, a retrospective of films by the Black Audio Film Collective. Seminal documentaries, some rarely seen and showing all day.
Sixty years later John Akomfrah, a leading director in the now disbanded Black Audio Film Collective (1982-1988) made the very same journey to make a movie about the experience of mixed race families, and to talk about how they were treated and perceived.
Black Audio's Reece Auguiste argues that it is necessary to "systematiz[e] the ways in which sound, image, colour, and movement signify." However, he continues, the intervention of which film is capable does not reside simply on the level of style: "Since its inception, Black Audio Film Collective has endeavoured to build a critical language, a grammar of precision, of movement and fluidity.
In 1982, Ghana-born, London-based artist John Akomfrah cofounded the Black Audio Film Collective with fellow students at Portsmouth Polytechnic, aiming to kick-start a specifically black culture of politically and theoretically attuned moving-image work in the UK.
EXHIBITION: The Ghosts of Songs is a retrospective of work by the Black Audio Film Collective. From tomorrow, 11am-6pm, FACT, Wood Street.
As a founding member of the acclaimed Black Audio Film Collective, Akomfrah contributed to the now-disbanded group's filmic studies of great twentieth-century intellectuals, activists, and cultural figures such as Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr.; of social developments such as the Black Power movement championed by Michael X in 1960s Britain or the Handsworth uprisings and related racial conflicts of the mid-'80s; and of influential musicians including Sun Ra and George Clinton.
The seven-person Black Audio Film Collective was one of the most important groups to emerge in the 1980s challenging notions of the moving image.