Autograph, London

Reconnecting with the Land: Sethembile Msezane
Screening & Talk

Sat 16 Jul 3 - 4:30pm

Free event
Curated by Janine Francois

Reflecting on indigenous South African wellbeing practices, spiritual and political symbolism and the wider ongoing pressures of the postcolonial experience in wake of COVID-19


Rivington Place
London EC2A 3BA, UK

Past event

This event is now closed.


Join us at Autograph's gallery for a screening of ISIMO, a contemplative film developed in the wake of Covid-19 by artist Sethembile Msezane in response to a personal and societal need to maintain mental, physical, and spiritual wellbeing. In the film, Msezane explores indigenous South African wellbeing practices – recognising the land, its plants and all their healing properties as a holistic route that addresses the need for wellness during the pandemic and the wider ongoing pressures of the postcolonial experience.

The screening will be followed by a conversation with the artist about the film, her art practice and personal politics. We will consider how the film reflects a wider creative practice underpinned by spiritual and political symbolism, issues around spirituality, commemoration, and African knowledge systems.

We will end with an audience Q&A, and Msezane will give a preview of her newest work 
Let the Emerald Village Carry Me.

Have a question you’d like to send in advance for the Q&A? Email with ‘Reconnecting’ in the subject line and we’ll aim to answer as many questions as we can on the day.

This event will take place in person at Autograph's gallery in Hackney, London.


Sethembile Msezane

Sethembile uses interdisciplinary practices encompassing performance, photography, film, sculpture, drawing, exploring spiritual and political symbolism. The artist explores issues around spirituality, commemoration, and African knowledge systems. She processes her dreams as a medium through a lens of the plurality of existence across space and time, asking questions about the remembrance of ancestry. Part of her work has examined the processes of mythmaking which are used to construct history, calling attention to the absence of the black female body in both the narratives and physical spaces of historical commemoration.

Msezane’s work has been widely exhibited across South Africa and internationally. Recent solo presentations include UKUKHANYA (Dakar Biennale), Nibizwa Ngabangcwele (Sainsbury Center, England), Isimo (Gallery of the University Stellenbosch, South Africa), Speaking Through Walls (Tyburn Gallery, London), All Things Being Equal..(Zeitz MOCAA, Cape Town).

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Bolanle Tajudeen

Bolanle Tajudeen (she/her) is the founder of Black Blossoms—an expanded curatorial platform showcasing contemporary Black non-binary artists and women since 2015. She is also a lead tutor of Art in the Age of Black Girl Magic, an in-depth course on Black womxn artists which she devised in 2017. The course has been delivered at Tate, Southbank, and The Photographers’ Gallery.

In 2020, the Black Blossoms School of Art and Culture was established as an e-learning platform that expands critical and diverse thought. The aim of the school to decolonise, deconstruct and democratise art and creative education.

hosted by

Janine Francois

Janine is a public scholar, writer and curator. Janine's writing credits include Architectural Review, The Independent, Huffington Post and they also contributed to Barbican’s Our Time on Earth exhibition catalogue. Janine has curated works across Guest Projects Africa/Shonibare Studios, Lyric Hammersmith, 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning, Tate Britain and Rich Mix.

Janine is a PhD student at Tate and University of Bedfordshire, exploring if Tate can be a safe space to explore issues of race and cultural differences. Janine is currently working with Sethembile who is undertaking a residency at Central Saint Martins.

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Everyone is welcome at Autograph. We care about our visitors, staff, artists and community, and have measures in place to help ensure a safe visit for everyone. Have a look at our Visit Us page, it has full information about Covid-19 safety and accessibility at Autograph.


Accessible VEnue

Autograph welcomes people with all types of disabilities.



Help us keep everyone safe. If you are able to, please wear a face covering during your visit.


Step free

Our building and entrance is step free. A wheelchair accessible lift goes to all floors.

also on at autograph

Mónica de Miranda: The Island

Free exhibition, 24 Jun - 22 Oct 2022
A new exhibition contemplating the complex experiences of Afrodiasporic lives, relationships to the land and colonial pasts.

Read and see more

Ticketing policy

Autograph's events are popular, and often sell out. We recommend booking a ticket in advance. This event is free, and seating is on a first-come first-seated basis. You do not need to bring your paper ticket to the event.


This event is part of a wider residency project with Central Saint Martins, involving a series of performances and talks culminating in small scale sharing at Central Saint Martin’s Lethaby Gallery.
Let the Emerald Village Carry Me will debut at the Lethaby Gallery on July 29th 2022.

supported by

Banner image: © Sethembile Msezane. ISIMO. 2020.

Images on page: 1) Courtesy Sethembile Msezane. 2) Janine Francois. Photography by Fraser H-N courtesy of GUTS Gallery. 3) Rivington Place, home of Autograph. Photograph by Zoë Maxwell. 4) Mónica de Miranda, Whistle for the Wind [detail], from The Island, 2021. Commissioned by Autograph. Supported by Art Fund.