Wilfred Ukpong: BC-1 Niger-Delta / Future-Cosmos

16 Feb – 1 Jun 2024

Free Exhibition

Visual meditations on the environmental crisis in the Niger Delta

in development

This exhibition is in currently in development at Autograph


Rivington Place
London EC2A 3BA, UK



Free, timed tickets will be available nearer the exhibition start date


Wilfred Ukpong’s practice explores aspects of Afrofuturism and mysticism combining compelling and poetic reflections on the current crisis of environmental degradation and exploitation in the Niger Delta. Drawing from historical and personal archives, Ukpong's meditations on the crisis demonstrate how artmaking can be used as a tool for social empowerment and to challenge colonial narratives.

Autograph is developing a new exhibition of Ukpong's work for 2024. We will update this page as the project develops - join our newsletter to get the latest from Autograph in your inbox.


BC1-CRUDELAND: The Geogami's Throne, 2020

By and by, I Will Carry this Burden of Hope, till the Laments of my Newborn is Heard #2, 2017

BC1-ND-FC: By And by, I Will Carry This Burden of Hope, Till the Laments of my Child is Heard #1, 2017

BC1-ND-FC: Are My Dreams too Bold for the Carbon Skin I Bear #1, 2017

FUTURE - WORLD - EXV (film trailer), 2019

FUTURE-WORLD-EXV is set in a speculative future, which follows an oilman who becomes torn between pursuing his industrial duties and haunting visions of the escalating environmental crisis. He finds his fate in the hands of a colony of indigenous people who live in a water environment and worship a sea goddess.

Over the course of 16 minutes, FUTURE-WORLD-EXV explores and re-imagines the art of filmmaking as an extended practice with a social focus. The film unfolds a poetic and fragmented dreamscape narrative, tied together with text, original musical scores, and interlays of archival footage in the absence of dialogue.

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about the artist

Wilfred Ukpong

Wilfred Ukpong (PhD) is an interdisciplinary artist and researcher who incorporate a studio-based artistic practice - working between photography, film, video, sculpture, installation, sound, and performance - with connective social engagement, tackling pertinent social issues with community participation and intervention.

His long-term project in the Niger Delta, Blazing Century 1, received a special grant from the Prince Claus Fund Amsterdam and has been exhibited in prestigious institutions among Alliance Française/Mike Adenuga Centre Lagos, Institut français du Nigeria Abuja, FotoFest Biennial 2020/2022 Houston, Pipe Factory Glasgow, MARKK Museum Hamburg, and Welt Museum Vienna. 

His short film
 FUTURE-WORLD (2017) won the Golden City Gates Excellence Award at ITB Berlin in 2018. It was screened at Mash Johannesburg and David Krut Projects Johannesburg/Cape Town and to the Senate of Nigeria to encourage a dialogue about environmental change in the Niger Delta, the artist's place of birth in Southern Nigeria. Ukpong extended his short film into FUTURE-WORLD-EXV (2019), shown in the 2021 Essay Film Festival London, Autograph ABP London, Royal Society of Art London, Welt Museum Vienna and Public Ecology Film Festival Cape Town.

Ukpong received his BA/MA Fine Art Degree – with magna cum laude  from Ecole Supérieure d'Art Lorient, France, and his PhD from Oxford Brookes University, United Kingdom. He lives and works out of Oxford (UK), Clermont-Ferrand (France), and Eket (Nigeria).

Follow the artist on Instagram.

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Group Visits

16 Feb – 1 Jun 2024
Visit two upcoming photography exhibitions at Autograph's gallery in Hackney

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digital CONTENT

African Cosmologies playlist

Lose yourself (or, perhaps, find yourself) in this playlist curated by Autograph’s Director Mark Sealy


Online Gallery: Afrofuturism, Mysticism and Climate Justice

View Wilfred Ukpong's visual meditations on the environmental crisis in the Niger Delta

View gallery

From the Niger Delta to Southall

Writer Selina Nwulu considers the issues that bind the struggles for racial and climate justice

Read blog post | 4 min read

Banner image: Wilfred Ukpong, FUTURE - WORLD - EXV: Dream Chasers on a Floater, 2017. © and courtesy the artist

Exhibition preview: all images © and courtesy of Wilfred Ukpong and Blazing Century Studios

About the artist: Courtesy the artist.