The Institute for Creative Arts (ICA) is pleased to introduce its international, national, live art and curatorial fellows for 2016. Awarded to creative thinkers and doers in diverse disciplines, ICA fellowships encourage collaborative dialogue around issues of urbanism, community, historical legacy and the postcolonial imaginary.
Fellows are encouraged to test boundaries, engage with new publics, and to explore the critical potentialities of live art. We are particularly excited about the diverse contributions and imaginative ways of thinking presented by this year’s fellows – from performative writing, dance and music, to art, curatorship and interdisciplinary research. Conversations, exhibitions and public interventions presented by fellows will be announced in due course.
International fellowships have been granted to Roxanne Campbell, Andrew Hennlich, Felicia Mings and Meghna Singh. National fellowships have granted to Genna Gardini, Sihle Hlophe, Robert Machiri, Memory Biwa and Amie Soudien. Curatorial fellowships have been granted to Chandra Frank and Thembinkosi Goniwe. Live Art fellowships have been granted to Euridice Kala, Thalia Laric, Zanele Muholi, Alan Parker and Nala Xaba.
ICA International Fellows:
Roxanne Campbell (Jamaica/United States)
Roxanne R Campbell is a visual artist, born in Kingston, Jamaica, and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Campbell has a MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts from Duke University and a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art, concentration cinematography, from the University of Virginia. Her documentary work is often observational and explores the representation of African and Afro-Caribbean culture and identity, by counter-framing accepted narratives of the African Diaspora in the Americas. Her project Color Bar, is an interview-driven documentary project that examines concepts of race and masculinity in relation to Black identity – in particular, labels and stereotypes associated with skin tone.
Andrew Hennlich (United States)
Andrew Hennlich is Assistant Professor of Art History at Western Michigan University. Hennlich will research Athi-Patra Ruga’s Future White Women of Azania, considering Ruga’s performances and tapestry through Walter Benjamin’s work on collective dream images of mass culture and the critical function of art. By bringing Benjamin and Ruga’s work together he will explore how Ruga draws connections between Holocaust and apartheid memory in public space, offering an avenue to awaken to new models of social transformation in post-apartheid South Africa.
Felicia Mings (Canada/United States)
Felicia Mings is a Canadian-born and US-based independent curator and arts educator. She is also the inaugural Coordinator of the Andrew W. Mellon Summer Academy and Undergraduate Curatorial Fellowship Program at the Art Institute of Chicago. Felicia’s work at the Art Institute has spurred her interest in curricular models for diversity in curatorial practice. As a result her current research aims to refine new and effective modes for curatorial training.
Meghna Singh (India/South Africa)
Meghna Singh is a visual artist and researcher. Hailing from New Delhi, she is currently pursuing art practice and a doctoral research at the University of Cape Town. Taking the memory and site of the Portugese slave ship, San Jose paquette de Africa, that sank in Cape Town on the 27th December 1794 with 212 slaves from Mozambique, the project engages with the politics of invisible populations that sail across oceans. Drawing on the history of transported black bodies, her work is about the circulation of human lives and things at sea within the framework of historical and contemporary trade routes and economies of exchange from East Africa to Brazil and Portugal.
ICA National Fellows:
Genna Gardini (South Africa)
Genna Gardini is a writer based in Cape Town. She has won multiple awards for her work as a poet and playwright, including the DALRO New Coin Poetry Prize. Gardini is a co-founder of Horses’ Heads Productions and member of PlayRiot, the South African playwrights collective. She holds an MA in Theatre-making (Playwriting) from UCT and is currently a lecturer at CityVarsity. Matric Rage, published by uHlanga, is Gardini’s debut poetry collection. Her current project, MS Independent: Diagnosis uses poetry and performance writing to explore experiences of being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, as registered by a group of womxn and LGBTQIAP+ South Africans, including Gardini.
Sihle Hlophe (South Africa)
Sihle Hlophe is a talented scriptwriter, director and entrepreneur who holds a MA in Communication Studies. Her work has been broadcast on SABC, eTV and DSTV and screened as far afield as Switzerland, Tanzania, Finland and the USA. Hlophe’s current project, Lobola, A Bride’s True Price is a 80 minute documentary that challenges the heteronormative notion of ‘lobola/bride’s price’ by retracing the roots of the Bantu people of Southern Africa. The marriage of symbolism, satirical images of ‘deep dark Africa’, archival material and stop frame animation complement the films’ deeply personal video diary style.
Robert Machiri and Memory Biwa (Zimbabwe and Namibia)
Robert Machiri, also known as Chi, is a Zimbabwean multidisciplinary artist and curator. His project, Pungwe Nights, is a participatory public platform which hosts African music with related contemporary arts.
Memory Biwa is a historian who researches and writes on the afterlives of genocide in Namibia, combining anthropology, performance and sound studies.
Listening at Pungwe Nights explores the relationship between the sound of language and the language of sound. Collaborating on the project, Machiri and Biwa reimagine the dialectic relationship between recording, translation and the recyclability of transnational phonographic cultures. The overall composition of the work will gather its form through experiential performance, as a live remix at a pungwe, or wake, and as an unbounded sonic exploration of khoekhoegowab orature and mbira tongues.
Amie LH Soudien (South Africa)
Amie LH Soudien is an arts journalist and artist from Cape Town. Soudien completed her BAFA at Michaelis School of Fine Art in 2013, and completed her MA in New Arts Journalism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2016. Her current interests include postcolonial studies, popular media, and emerging artists from Africa and the diaspora. With ICA, Soudien will present a series of walking tours of the Cape Town CBD centered on the city’s untold early colonial history. The tour series will focus exclusively on women and the narratives of slaves, indigenous people, and colonial subjects.
ICA Curatorial Fellows:
Chandra Frank (Netherlands/South Africa)
Chandra Frank is an independent curator and PhD Candidate at Goldsmiths, University of London. Her research is focused on Black and brown feminist and queer genealogies, the role of archives and deepening our understanding of intimacy and pleasure. She will be exploring how the archive may be refigured in the exhibition space, and how the transnational exchange of bodies and text offers new perspectives on queer intimacy that may transcend archival violence. Frank will explore the changing role of the curator and discuss how and where her own body and subjectivity enters the exhibition-making process, and how the creation of new archives is inherently a communal and transformative one.
Thembinkosi Goniwe (South Africa)
Currently a visiting researcher at the Wits School of Arts, Thembinkosi Goniwe is an artist and art historian whose curatorial fellowship will reimagine Ernest Mancoba’s Bantu Madonna through performative and collaborative works of art. Significant to the project is the notion of performing the text, as different mediums, strategies, modes, disciplines and registers are explored as intersectional performances – reading, analysing, revisiting and reimagining a seminal artwork by a pioneering artist in the history of South African visual art.
ICA Live Art Fellows:
Euridice Kala (Mozambique)
Based in Maputo, Euridice Getulio Kala is a Mozambican artist interested in historical cultural metamorphoses, manipulations and adaptations, and the ways these resonate within contemporary contexts. To be presentaed at the 2016 ICA Live Art Festival, her forthcoming performance will include material and sounds gathered from between Ilha de Moçambique (Mozambique) and Cape Town (South Africa), presenting these as points of encounter between the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. The performance forms part of a broader research and artistic project, Sea (e) Scapes, which seeks to generate discourse by negotiating space and shared narratives – expanding and including Indian Ocean possibilities.
Thalia Laric (South Africa)
Thalia Laric is one of the leading teachers of Contact Improvisation in Cape Town. Her project proposes research related to the performance of contact-based improvisations – in particular the development of compositional awareness practice within an improvisational dance form that is at once social, kinaesthetic and performative. Thalia holds a Master’s degree in Choreography from Rhodes University and has performed with the First Physical Theatre Company. She is a founding member and director of the award winning collective, Underground Dance Theatre.
Zanele Muholi (South Africa)
Zanele Muholi is a photographer and activist whose self-proclaimed mission is ‘to re-write a black queer and trans visual history of South Africa for the world to know of our resistance and existence at the height of hate crimes in SA and beyond’. In 2002 she co-founded the Forum for Empowerment of Women (FEW), and in 2009 founded Inkanyiso, a forum for queer and visual (activist) media. Extending her existing photographic project, Somnyama Ngonyama, she has invited a selection of artists, poets and musicians to interpret and perform the images, which focus on different queer/transphobic and racist incidents that continue to take place in South Africa and other countries.
Alan Parker (South Africa)
Alan Parker is a Cape Town-based choreographer, performer and teacher, currently engaged in doctoral research at the University of Cape Town, where he also lectures in the School of Dance, the Department of Drama and the College of Music. Parker’s PhD research considers the relationship between the live arts and the archive, with a specific focus on choreographic strategies aimed at performing the archive. His current performance project, ‘ma’, takes its inspiration from past dances about death, where the resurrection of the dead through dance performance is likened to the archival act of performance reconstruction.
Nala Xaba (South Africa)
Nala Xaba is a curator, dancer and visual artist from Johannesburg, living and working in Cape Town. Her interdisciplinary research is a decolonialist interrogation of how art centres and residencies, which position themselves as intermediaries between artists and funders, influence the work of (especially cis- and trans womxn and non-binary) artists. She hopes to move towards a theory of socially justified institutional practice, which undermines the psychologically and epistemically violent ‘–isms’ of exclusion and dehumanization.