Staying Power: Photographs of Black British Experience, 1950s – 1990s

by Black Cultural Archives Following their first exhibition Re-imagine: Black Women in Britain, the Black Cultural Archives present Staying Power: Photographs of Black British Experience, 1950-1990s from Thursday 15 January – Tuesday 30 June 2015. This new exhibition is the culmination of a seven year collaborative project between Black Cultural Archives and the Victoria and… Read More

“I belong deeply to myself” by Somali Art

by Somali Art I make art that is influenced by Somali culture and history. The horn of Africa is a historical gateway between Africa and Asia. Somali culture is rich in influences including other African cultures, Persian, Ottoman, Arab and Indian culture. Since the Somali civil war the arts scene in the Somali community has… Read More

Visions of Postcolonial Ageing

By Sangita Mistry  A memory of my grandfather wafts into the air each time someone passes me, chewing paan. The distinctive aroma of the crushed supari (diced betal nut), sprinkled like crimson gold dust onto the white paste (chuno – lime stone) and spread onto a betal leaf is a vivid sense memory. My research… Read More

Can Art Be Racist?

Looking at Art Critically by Chan I love art, truly I do, but it really becomes a source of frustration when it is viewed as above critique. In many senses art is critiqued constantly. The meanings are deconstructed and analysed, but people magically forget this methodical approach when there is an outcry that some art… Read More

Race, Revenue and Representation

While the statistics may suggest otherwise, my own personal experience is that the creative industry has always been a relatively level playing field – where ‘race’ is overtaken by ‘revenue’ every time. If you have the creative talent and commercially exploitable skills, then colour doesn’t come into it.

However, the problem is getting your foot in the door to showcase your skills in the first place. In a world where ‘who you know’ can make a world of difference, that’s not so easy if you don’t know anyone in the industry. And this is where the issue of ‘under-representation’ is a major problem. Read More

Stuart Hall and Black British photography | Part 2

by Jagdish Patel In the UK, many photographers have used photography to examine their own identity, whether this identity rests in being black, their class, gender, sexuality or disability. In the period from the late 1960’s to the 1970’s many ‘white’ photographers also explored the social changes in Britain. This was a period when Britain… Read More

Hidden, blurred and visible: migrant women fabricating a home in new spaces

by Dr Anna Sulan Masing If I scream in an empty room, will you hear me? She asked Because sometimes this feels like an empty room She said When you rush past me, in your busy moments, With colours I don’t recognise, Sounds that don’t feel familiar, And smells that itch my skin, My toes… Read More

Stuart Hall and Black British photography | Part 1

by Jagdish Patel The death of Stuart Hall on the 10th February was marked by worldwide praise for ‘Britain’s leading cultural theorist’. (2014. Stuart Hall – obituary, Daily Telegraph, 10th February,) It is rare for an academic to receive accolades in the mainstream press, and this perhaps reflects how Hall presented his ideas, not only… Read More

Black Artists Centre Stage: An Interview with Everton Wright

by Jon Daniel In October, we in the UK celebrate Black History Month. The tradition started 27 years ago and provides a small, but well established window of opportunity to focus on the achievements of primarily African and African-Caribbean people in the UK. Befitting this historical date in the calendar, I wanted to take the… Read More

A Human Zoo For The ‘Post Racial’ 21st Century

Brett Bailey and the new white supremacy by Simon Woolley I guess it’s one way to get international fame, lauded by liberals, and thanked by Black actors for getting some miserly short term employment. But in the real world for the vast majority of Black Britons, and other Africans on main land Europe -where this… Read More