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John Akomfrah: Precarity

John Akomfrah: Precarity


[Water flowing] ♪ [Spiritual Music] ♪ I’m Trevor Schoonmaker The chief curator and Patsy R.
and Raymond D. Nasher Curator of
contemporary art at the Nasher Museum of art at
Duke University John Akomfrah is one of the
pioneers of experimental art cinema in the
United Kingdom. In 1982 he was the founder of the
“Black Audio Film Collective” and he is currently the director
of “Smoking Dogs Films” John is an artist I have known for a
long time and I knew his work would be
perfect for an exhibition I was organizing
in New Orleans a city-wide triennial called
“Prospect.4: The Lotus in Spite
of the Swamp” John made this work specifically
for that occasion It premiered in fall of 2017 and
the Nasher Museum came on board to
produce and commission the
work It has since then become part of
our collection here at the museum and we are
very proud to have it in the
collection Hi my name is John Akomfrah I’m an artist/filmmaker born in
Ghana in Accra I’ve lived and worked in London
pretty much all my life Behind me is “Precarity” which
is my latest piece It’s 46 minutes long The central figure of
“Precarity” is jazz legend Buddy Bolden He’s a legend because everyone credits him with being the
father of jazz but actually no one knows a
thing about his life or his music So “Precarity” is an attempt to
try and make sense of what
constitutes a legend

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