Coal After Audre (2020)  Barby Asante 

Barby Asante’s meditation Coal After Audre, has been created in remembrance and reverence of the power of poetry for black women as expressed in Audre Lorde’s 1985 essay Poetry is Not A Luxury. For Lorde poetry is “the quality of light by which we scrutinise our lives”. Coal After Audre reflects on Lorde’s poem Coal from her 1968 First Cities collection and an Alexis Pauline Gumbs quote from her 2020 book Dub: Finding Ceremony, which asks “How do you write a poem about coal?”

Lorde’s Coal takes the metaphor of coal as black fuel to create the and express the words being spoken “from the earth’s inside”. Coal After Audre takes this metaphor and reimagines coal as a much-maligned and rejected fuel, in a moment when words are difficult to find, yet somewhere within the ancient wisdom of coal; within its compressed matter of everyday life, there is light. The light that is attempting to make itself seen through the darkness.

Barby Asante is an artist, curator and researcher. Her artistic practice is concerned with the politics of place, space and the ever-present histories and legacies of slavery and colonialism. With a deep interest in black feminist and decolonial methodologies, Barby embeds within her work notions of collective study, countless ways of knowing and dialogical practices that embrace being together and breathing together. Through collective writing, re-enactment and creating spaces for transformation, ritual and healing Barby has developed a practice of re-collecting, collating, excavating and re-mapping stories and narratives that are often unspoken, invisible or buried with the archival document.

Her recent exhibitions and projects include: Declaration of Independence: For Ama. For Aba. Diaspora Pavilion, Venice, 2017, BALTIC, Gateshead 2019, Bergen Kusthall 2020, Brent 2020: Black Togetherness as Lingua Franca with Amal Alhaag, Framer Framed, Amsterdam, 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning, 2018 and Baldwin’s Nigger R E L O A D E D, INIVA, London, 2014, Nottingham Contemporary 2015, A Language to Dwell In: International James Baldwin Conference, Paris, 2016, GOMA/ Glasgow International 2018, Somerset House, London 2019.

 Online Viewing Room Only (2020)   Emma Hart  

The lengths some people will go to, to get you to view their online exhibition is unreal. Also, switching from a real life exhibition, to an online viewing room is confusing. What are the demands being made on you now? Is it the sculptures that need your physical presence but can’t have it, or just the artist craving your attention?

This video is made with the documentation of Emma Hart’s exhibition Be Some Body at The Sunday Painter, 2nd Oct - 19th Dec 2020. Due to the changing restrictions brought in to combat the pandemic the exhibition opened and then closed and then opened again. The photographs are by Lewis Ronald.

Emma Hart lives and works in London. In 2016 she won the Max Mara Art Prize for Women in collaboration with the Whitechapel Gallery. In 2015 she was awarded a Paul Hamlyn Foundation award for Visual Art. In 2022 Hart will realise her first permanent sculpture for the public entrance of the UCL East, Pool Street West building, on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Hart received an MA in Fine Art from the Slade in 2004 and completed her PhD in Fine Art at Kingston University in 2013. Hart is a lecturer at the Slade School of Fine Art, London.

 23 Muddles & Mômo's Magical Murders (2020) Joey Ryken 

23 Muddles & Mômo's Magical Murders is a video montage examining the artist's drawing series 23 Drawings to Muddle Magic, as well as dictation-drawings made in magical conversation with Antonin Artaud's drawings from some of his many notebooks. The audio is a fragmented montage of trance induction drones composed for drawing-based psychomagical rituals, or what the artist terms 'Octochronoplasmancy'.

This video is intended as an act of enchantment, and a perpetually imminent means to conjure apocalyptic ghosts. However, the artist takes no responsibility for supernatural anomalies that may occur as a result of viewing.

Joey Ryken (b.1976, Anchorage, Alaska) is an artist based in London, UK. Their art practice and academic research explore experimental approaches to occult magic and hallucinatory experience, using drawing, sound, moving image, text, and absurdist performance. Prevailing research themes include drawing as a process of magical invocation; audiovisual media as hallucinatory witness; and performance as abstracted magic ritual, exploring entrancement within music sub/cultures and intercultural subjectivities.

Ryken has recently completed a PhD in Art Research at Kingston School of Art, titled Bodies of Pure Intensity: Drawing as Magical Apparatus. They perform as guitar-noise avatar Me/Mi MôMo Mu, and is a collaborator in the speculative Boricua diaspora art collective De Nada Unidos. Ryken has exhibited, performed and produced events in idiosyncratic locations throughout the US and in the UK, as well as at major arts institutions in the UK, including ArtSway, Camden Arts Centre, Gasworks, Goldsmiths, ICA, Somerset House, and Stanley Picker Gallery.