URBAN REALIGNMENTS: ETHNOGRAPHIC AND ARTISTIC VENTURES INTO CONGO’S CITYSCAPES. TALK WITH SAMMY BALOJI AND FILIP DE BOECK

Sammy Baloji_Filip De Boeck_poster_leveDate: March, 24
Venue: Hangar – Artistic Research Centre, Lisbon
Schedule: 6 pm – 8 pm

Versão portuguesa

Sammy Baloji and Filip De Boeck will discuss their book Suturing the City: Living Together in Congo’s Urban Worlds (2016) and their exhibition Urban Now: City Life in Congo, which will be on view in Lisbon from the end of March (Galeria Av. da Índia).

Sammy Baloji (b. 1978 Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo) is a visual artist based in Brussels and Lubumbashi. He is the co-founder of the Lubumbashi Biennial organized by Picha Asbl. Internationally renowned, Baloji’s work has been exhibited in prestigious venues such as the Musée du Quai Branly, Paris; Muzee, Ostend; the Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren; Museum for African Art, New York; WIELS, Brussels; the Venice Art Biennial, Venice; and Documenta 2017, Kassel and Athens. Recent book publications include Mémoire/Kolwezi (2014), Hunting and Collecting (2016), and Suturing the City: Living Together in Congo’s Urban Worlds (2016, with Filip De Boeck).

Filip De Boeck (b. 1961, Antwerp, Belgium) is Professor of Anthropology at the Institute for Anthropological Research in Africa (IARA) at the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. His book publications include Kinshasa: Tales of the Invisible City (2004, with photographer Marie-Françoise Plissart), and most recently Suturing the City: Living Together in Congo’s Urban Worlds (2016, with Sammy Baloji). De Boeck also directed Cemetery State (2010), a documentary about a Kinshasa graveyard, and produced several exhibitions. His exhibition Kinshasa: Imaginary City (2014), co-curated with Koen Van Synghel for the Belgian Pavillion at the 9th Venice Architecture Biennial, was awarded a Golden Lion. In 2016, De Boeck and Baloji presented the exhibition Urban Now: City Life in Congo at WIELS Contemporary Art Centre, Brussels, in collaboration with the Open Society (New York) and The Power Plant (Toronto). On March 23 2018, the exhibition will open at Galeria Av. da Índia/EGEAC (Lisbon).

This is the first event of the series Thinking from the South: Comparing Post-Colonial Histories and Diasporic Identities through Artistic Practices and Spaces, organized by Ana Balona de Oliveira.

This series of talks and lectures intends to open up a comparative discussion on the ways in which artistic practices and spaces – most notably those whose programming is centred on anti-racist, feminist, diasporic and migratory politics – have been working towards an epistemic decolonization.  With speakers from different generations, geographical contexts and professional backgrounds, the series will provide an opportunity for sharing knowledge and experiences on colonial, anti- and post-colonial histories and diasporic identities, and for looking into transnational and trans-disciplinary strategies of decolonization through artistic, curatorial, activist and academic practices. It departs from the premise that cultural production has a fundamental role to play in political, social and economic arenas.

This activity is organized in the scope of the projects VISUAL CULTURE, MIGRATION, GLOBALIZATION AND DECOLONIZATION and POST-ARCHIVE: POLITICS OF MEMORY, PLACE AND IDENTITY, both of group CITCOM.