Okwui Enwezor, or the art of curating
Przemysław Strożek in a conversation with Jane Chin Davidson and Alpesh Kantilal Patel (in English)
Online | ZOOM
Przemysław Strożek, co-curator of the recent exhibition Ahmed Cherkaoui in Warsaw. Polish–Moroccan Artistic Relations in 1955–1980 (2020) and author of the book with the same title, will discuss Okwui Enwezor’s work and influence with the editors of a special issue of the academic journal Nka, Jane Chin Davidson and Alpesh Kantilal Patel.
The special issue of Nka. Journal of Contemporary African Art is dedicated to the memory of Okwui Enwezor (1963–2019), the first Black and African-origin curator and director of documenta11 (2002) and the 56th Venice Biennale (2015). The articles collected here highlight the profound impact this Nigerian art historian, curator, poet and educator has had on the curatorial practice of global exhibitions. Enwezor created political platforms and artistic manifestos that not only changed the form and function of such exhibitions, but also facilitated new ways of combining activism with aesthetic practice, performance spaces and curatorial initiatives. The authors of the articles — art historians, critics, curators and artists — also address how Enwezor’s approach to the exhibition as a ‘space of public discourse’ intersects with theories of affect, indigenousness, race, queer studies and feminism.
Authors: Sir David Adjaye, OBE, Natasha Becker, Naomi Beckwith, Zarina Bhimji, Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons, Jody B. Cutler-Bittner, Jane Chin Davidson, Shane Doyle, Tamar Garb, Kendell Geers, Salah M. Hassan, Amelia Jones, Isaac Julien, Abdellah Karroum, Monique Kerman, Ibrahim Mahama, Steve McQueen, OBE, CBE, Julie Mehretu, Gideon Mendel, Susette Min, Wangechi Mutu, Sabine Dahl Nielsen, Chris Ofili, Chika Okeke-Agulu, Alpesh Kantilal Patel, Anne Ring Petersen, Yinka Shonibare, CBE, Penny Siopis, Mary Ellen Strom, Przemyslaw Strozek, Mikhael Subotzky, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, Octavio Zaya
Przemysław Strożek, PhD, assistant professor at the Institute of Art of the Polish Academy of Sciences, scholarship holder of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education and the Foundation for Polish Science in the category of young scientists, Fulbright scholar and fellow of the Accademia dei Lincei, associate of the Archiv der Avantgarden in Dresden. He works on the history of the avant-garde, modernism and contemporary art. Curator of the 2017 exhibition Enrico Prampolini. Futurism, scenotechnics and theatre of the Polish avant-garde in Łódź and author of the exhibition catalogue.
His book Ahmed Cherkaoui in Warsaw. Polish–Moroccan Artistic relations in 1955–1980 was published in 2020; he curated an exhibition of the same title at Zachęta together with Sara Lagnaoui.
Jane Chin Davidson is an art historian; her research interests revolve around transnationalism in relation to Chinese identity, feminism and ecofeminism, as well as global exhibitions in contemporary art. She currently teaches at California State University, San Bernardino.
Alpesh Kantilal Patel is an art historian, curator and critic; his intellectual practice reflects an anti-racist, queer and transnational approach to contemporary art. He currently teaches at the Tyler School of Art and Architecture at Temple University in Philadelphia.