Autograph’s Senior Curator Renée Mussai discusses the creation of Lina Iris Viktor’s exhibition, the research that informs the works on display, and Viktor’s performative engagement of the self.
Using the exhibition as a point of departure, Mussai will also reflect on the process of working closely with artists – especially black women and gender non conforming practitioners – to develop immersive curatorial projects and site-specific gallery installations. Viktor's work will be considered in relation to contemporary artists such as Zanele Muholi, Aida Silvestri, Jeannette Ehlers, and Phoebe Boswell, all of whom have exhibited at Autograph in recent years.
Mussai will be joined by independent curator Karen Alexander, discussing shared curatorial concerns and the common threads running through the work of these artists as they explore the edges of reality, the personal, political, imaginary, history and memory.
This illustrated talk will be followed by Q&A with the audience.
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Renée Mussai is Senior Curator and Head of Curatorial at Autograph. A scholar-curator with a special interest in African, Black European and diasporic lens-based practices, Mussai publishes and lectures internationally on photography, curatorial activism and visual politics.
Since 2009, she has been a regular guest curator and former non-resident fellow at the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. She is also a Research Associate in the Visual Identities in Art and Design Research Centre, University of Johannesburg, Associate Lecturer at University of the Arts London, and PhD candidate in Art History at University College London.
Over the past decade, she has organised numerous exhibitions in Europe, Africa and the United States. Her writing has appeared in artist monographs, anthologies and journals such as Aperture, and Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art.
Karen Alexander is a London-based independent film and moving image curator and an associate lecturer at Central St Martins, University of the Arts, London. For over 15 years she worked with and for BFI and the Royal College of Art. Her areas of research are artists’ film and video, and the post-colonial visual politics of the African diaspora with particular reference to gender, race and representation.
Recent curatorial projects include: A Passion for Remembering: The Films of Maureen Blackwood, Cinema Rediscovered, Bristol (2019), Dream Time: We All Have Stories, Nuit Blanche, Toronto (2018), Whip It Good: Spinning From History’s Filthy Mind, Jeannette Elhers, Autograph, London (2015). She has written for numerous publications, most recently contributing to Artists' Moving Image in Britain Since 1989 (Paul Mellon Centre, 2019)
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Banner Image: Lina Iris Viktor- Some Are Born To Endless Night— Dark Matter at Autograph London 13 September - 25 January 2020. Curated by Renée Mussai. Photograph courtesy Ben Reeves.
Page images, from top left: 1) Lina Iris Viktor, II. For Some Are Born to Endless Night. Dark Matter [detail]. From the series Dark Continent: The Seven, 2015-9. Courtesy of the artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery. 2) James Barnor and Renée Mussai, 'Ever Young' studio at Rivington Place, London, 2010. Photo by Zoe Maxwell, courtesy of Autograph, London. 3) Renee Mussai, photograph by Lola Flash, 2018. 4) Lina Iris Viktor- Some Are Born To Endless Night— Dark Matter at Autograph London 13 September - 25 January 2020. Curated by Renée Mussai. Photograph courtesy Ben Reeves. 5) Entrance to Rivington Place, home of Autograph. Photograph by Zoë Maxwell. 6) Lina Iris Viktor- Some Are Born To Endless Night— Dark Matter at Autograph London 13 September - 25 January 2020. Curated by Renée Mussai. Photograph courtesy Ben Reeves.
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