How can modern cultural institutions foster creative spaces for the generations to come? Tune in to find the answer with the new guests, coming from some of the most influential institutions in the world.
Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, editor, lecturer
– March, 2022
On navigating the complexities of identity and creating art ecosystems – Ngaire Blankenberg
“How can we contribute as an Afro-global Art institution to a regenerative art ecosystem? How can we not be extractive of collection, capital, people, how do we navigate the paradigm of ownership, how can we create a more equitable and regenerative ecosystem?” asks Ngaire Blankenberg, director of the Smithsonian Museum of African Art. Through her vision of the complexities of identity, she reflects on her position in one of the biggest cultural institutions in the world for African Art to create an accessible and durable Art ecosystem for the generations to come.
Keywords: Institutional – Global Africa – Regeneration
Bio: gaire Blankenberg is the Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. Previously, she has worked as a museum consultant, advising more than 55 cultural projects in 35 cities on 5 continents on all aspects of museological practice.
She has worked with all types of museums- from national to local, with collections ranging from history,art, science, football, rice, space, ideas. In addition to museums, she has advised on integrating cultural spaces in cities and parks, developing art residencies,making archives accessible, engaging communities and decolonizing knowledge production.
She is co-editor, with Gail Lord, of Cities, Museums and Soft Power (AAM Press 2015) which urges museums to play a more vital role in creating equitable, inclusive and empowering cities; and co-editor, with Ali Hossaini, of the Manual of Digital Museum Planning, (Rowman and Littlefield 2017) which provides practical guidance for cultural institutes to transform to reflect new digital realities.
Prior to becoming an independent consultant in 2018, Ngaire was Head of Content and Strategy at multiple award-winning exhibition design company Kossmann.deJong where she worked with diverse clients to create narrative experiences with lasting impact. From 2008- 2016 she was a Senior Consultant, Principal Consultant and finally European Director at notable global cultural planning firm Lord Cultural Resources.
Ngaire speaks, lectures and teaches frequently on the changing role of museums- most frequently on themes such as Decolonization and Diversity, Museums and Soft Power; and Museums and Placemaking.
Elvira Dyangani Ose
Director of the Museu d’Art Contemporani di Barcelona
– April, 2022
What we owe to the beauty of art – Elvira Dyangani Ose
“An institution should be an echo, a magnifier for the relationship between art and viewer. Curating is a collective project.” Elvira Dyangani Ose, Director of the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona and the first Black woman to take on the position, is aiming to change the European cultural landscape through curating projects for the people. In her new journey as the head of one of Spain’s most important museums, she still believes in putting the beauty of art first.
Keywords: Historymaking – Togetherness – Relation
Bio: Elvira Dyangani Ose (Córdoba, 1974) is the first woman to hold the position of Director of the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona. She is currently Director and Chief Curator of The Showroom in London, as well as Lecturer in Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London, and a member of the Thought Council, Fondazione Prada.
The General Council of the Consortium of the MACBA endorsed the proposal of the committee of experts, which especially valued Elvira Dyangani Ose’s desire to provide ‘an innovative approach to the role of the Museum on the local and international stage, while incorporating a clear desire to connect with contemporary debates on the role of art at the beginning of this century, without shying away from a firm commitment to the social issues surrounding cultural institutions’
CNN editor of the “As Equals” project, Founder of “The Nzinga Effect”, author and event moderator
– March, 2022
The power of the modern storyteller – Eliza Anyangwe
“There is this ongoing need to identify and challenge where power rests.” says Eliza Anyangwe, editor for the CNN “As Equals” project and Founder of The Nzinga Effect. After years of experience in the journalism world, Eliza takes on her role as a modern storyteller to challenge ideas of power hierarchies and how to make a place in the world for yourself, and for others.
Keywords: Curiosity – Love – Language
@ElizaTalks on Twitter
Bio: Eliza Anyangwe joined CNN in February 2021 as editor of the award-winning global gender inequality project As Equals.
She began her career working for international development and environmental NGOs but has spent over a decade in media, working at The Guardian, The Bureau of Investigative Journalism and, most recently, member-funded journalism platform The Correspondent where she was managing editor.
In 2016, Eliza founded The Nzinga Effect, a media project focused on telling the stories of African and Afro-descendant women. She’s a seasoned media commentator for TV and radio (appearing on BBC Newsnight, PRI’s The World, Our Body Politic among others); a moderator, hosting events and panels for organisations including Dell, Southbank Centre, Stockholm International Water Institute, ITC, Ecosoc and Government of Belgium; and is contributing author to ‘Africa’s Media Image in the 21st Century’, published by Routledge.
Eliza lives in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Director of Arts at the British Council
– April, 2022
Creativity as a tool for community-building – Skinder Hundal
“Art is not a hobby, or a luxury. Rather, it is a necessity, it gives purpose, and saves life.” Skinder Hundal, Director of the Arts of the British Council, unravels decades of learning through his outstanding career in artistic institutions in this episode of Creativity Pioneers. Discover how Skinder frames creativity as a tool for collaboration in communities, and how experiencing life through the arts allows one to innovate and form new ideas.
Keywords: Collaborative – Courage – Consciousness
Bio: As Director Arts for the British Council, Hundal oversees multiple art forms and major arts activity which includes cultural programmes for annual bilateral seasons such as UK/Italy 2020 and UK/Australia 2021-22; the British Pavilion exhibitions at La Biennale Arte and La Biennale Architettura, Venice; and the Market Focus Cultural Programme at the London Book Fair.
Hundal was previously CEO/Director of New Art Exchange, a contemporary arts space in Nottingham where over the past 12 years he has cemented a reputation for connecting diverse arts and cultural projects between the UK and overseas.
What’s beyond the word creativity? Why moving from the concept of creativity as pure imagination or as a skill, to creativity as a revolutionary power able to imagining something else, and then act on it?
Creativity in terms of creation with an impact on ourselves and our communities: join our journey.
Actor, filmmaker, singer, and writer, nigerian Brooklynite
– August, 2021
Everything is possible when you practice your creativity power – Adepero Oduye
“You can do many things with what is available to us, and there are a lot of things that are available to us. We have to find a way to exercise our power and create what we want to create, and not just have a small group of people decide what our stories are going to look like” – said Adepero Oduye, producer, actress, director, and writer – “There’s something I want to tell them this way, in my way, in our way, and I’m going to find a way to do it.”
Everything is possible is her mantra, being creative her power: she is sharing with us – with kindness, vulnerability, and humbleness – her vision and reflection about her life and the role of creativity and art in both her personal growth and society.
Keywords: Remember – Baba – Joy
@adeperoOduye on Twitter
Bio: Adepero Oduye, who gave a breakout performance as the star of Dee Rees’ “Pariah”, hails from Brooklyn, New York by way of Nigeria and is a Cornell University graduate.
Her film credits include “The Big Short” and “Twelve years a slave”. Theater credits include Mfoniso Udofia’s “Her Portmanteau” at The New York Theater Workshop, and “The Trip to Bountiful” on Broadway.
Most recently: Ava Duvernay’s “When they see us” for Netflix and Hulu’s “Monsterland”.
Currently: Marvel’s “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” for Disney+.
“To be free”, her second short film as director and writer, has recently been added into the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture’s permanent collection. The short stars Ms Oduye as Nina Simone.
leadership consultant and facilitator, international emcee and moderator, African Leadership University’s Executive Director
– August, 2021
Building innovative institutions for a new generation of African leaders – Veda Sunassee
Building institutions that are transformative and change the world is like building cathedrals: it requires a unique mindset to believe in something so big that you willing to commit to putting the foundation together, knowing that you may not live long enough to see it” said Veda Sunassee, African Leadership University’s Executive Director.
His path to leadership is ingrained in a constant self-reflection process that becomes the basis of an incredible and ambitious vision, building innovative institutions that will change the way we conceive education, and develop three million ethical and entrepreneurial leaders for Africa and the world by 2030.
Keywords: Kitchen – Stage – Cathedral
@vedasunassee on Twitter
Bio: Veda Sunassee has spent a decade in several roles with the African Leadership (AL) Group, first as an Entrepreneurial Leadership Faculty at the African Leadership Academy before later serving as the Founding Dean of the African Leadership University, Rwanda for 2 years. Veda currently serves as the ALU’s Executive Director, overseeing operations across both the Mauritius and Rwanda campuses while steering the institution’s new 5-year strategy. Veda is also a Leadership consultant and facilitator, international emcee and moderator and has worked with the likes of the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation, MasterCard Foundation, ELMA Philanthropies and Facebook. Veda is a graduate of Princeton University and was selected among the inaugural Obama Leaders in 2018.
Bonaventure S.B. Ndikung
independent curator, author and biotechnologist, founder and artistic director of SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin
– August, 2021
20 years in the music industry, NGO Bridges for Music Founder and CEO, life coach and mindfulness practioner
– September, 2021
Music as a catalyser of change through a new age educational model – Valentino Barrioseta
“If we had to choose one single skill to teach our kids and the future generations, that would be creativity, that innate talent that we all have as human beings…” said Valentino Barrioseta, NGO Bridges for Music Founder and CEO. “You can keep you learning throughout your whole life, and if you master this skills, creativity, curiosity and empathy, I really, really believe there’s nothing that can stop you from evolving as the world evolves”.
Find out Valentino vision of music as a powerful catalyser for attract and engage youth, a tool to shape a new educational model developing new self-awareness and sense of community, a creative expression to generate social impact actions.
Bio: Valentino has worked in the music industry for the last 20 years, having worked with leading brands, companies and artists and having founded himself several successful companies. From running some of the biggest clubs in the world, such as legendary Barraca in Valencia (Spain) or the globally renowned Amnesia Ibiza, often ranked among the top 3 events venues in the world, to founding a fashion and art magazine (LaMilk Magazine), a record label (Barraca Music) or managing himself some great artists with international success. Valentino has also consulted for numerous global brands on music and brand strategy ( Red Bull, Ford, Burn, BlackBerry, Pioneer DJ..) and has promoted concerts with artists like Snoop Dog, 50cent, Primal Scream , Skrillex or Richie Hawtin to name a few. But after a frenetic lifestyle working at the mecca of electronic music, in 2013 he moved to South Africa and founded the NGO Bridges for Music with some leading figures in the music industry. The aim of this organisation is to unite the music industry to leave a positive impact in underprivileged communities, bringing new opportunities through a new age educational model. Valentino’s passion over the last 5 years has been understanding better the needs and opportunities in South African townships, exploring the future of education and harnessing the power of his international network to generate a more sustainable impact.
These episodes are a collection of four Instagram live talks with some of the most inspiring authors of our Collection. Tune in to discover their creative process and be inspired by their unique stories.
information designer advocating for Data Humanism, partner at Pentagram Design
– May, 2021
Creativity shapes the world: pushing your boundaries out of your comfort zone – Giorgia Lupi
“I define myself as a designer… It’s not necessarily only a problem to solve, but really figuring out frameworks and rules for myself, which some artists do as well, especially in procedural art – said Giorgia Lupi explaining the relation between her big data design and the creative artistic process.
This episode moves from Giorgia Lupi’s creative concept in her authorial role for our Collection notebook to reflections about the connections between data design, creativity, and social impact.
“It’s really important for everybody to become a bit more data literate in a way… Really always trying to re-connect numbers to what they stand for – which are our life – it might lead to more impact, more social changes and really even just more aware of how we should use this, apparently cold, material called data.”
Bio: Lupi is an information designer. She is a Partner at Pentagram in New York.
After receiving her master’s degree in Architecture, she earned her PhD in Design at Politecnico di Milano.
In 2011, she co-founded Accurat, an internationally acclaimed data-driven design firm with offices in Milan and New York.
She is co-author of Dear Data and of the new interactive book Observe, Collect, Draw – A Visual Journal.
Giorgia is also a public speaker, her TED TALK on her humanistic approach to data has over one million views.
She has been named One of “Fast Company’s” 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2018, when she also joined MIT Media Lab as a Director’s Fellow. She is also a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on New Metrics and recently became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Art.
Her work is part of the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, where in 2017 she also was commissioned to create an original site-specific piece, and of the permanent collection of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.
Rossy de Palma
actress, artist and muse
– July, 2021
The healing power of art – Rossy de Palma
“Creativity can give us some therapeutic and balsamic power; we can express our creativity and share with the others and be inspired by others, like a chain. And I am happy to belong to this universe of art and always researching, always being curious about things – said Rossy De Palma, polyhedric artist, actress and muse – This social change with this creativity weapon is me.”
Get inspired by Rossy De Palma’s talk about the healing and contagious power of art, the importance of self-care and love to enter a spectacular creative process, and the artist’s role vision in our society.
Rosa Elena García Echave, better known as Rossy de Palma, is a Spanish actress and model. Born in Palma, she was originally a singer and dancer for the band Peor Imposible.
She was discovered by filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar at a café in Madrid in 1986. Her first major role was in 1988 in Almodóvar’s Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown and she would go on to be one of Almodóvar’s recurring cast.
She became a model for designers Jean-Paul Gaultier, Thierry Mugler, and Sybilla.
She then appeared in Robert Altman’s 1994 satirical fashion film Prêt-à-Porter and in the music video of George Michael’s “Too Funky” song.
As of 2010, she is a theater actress, charity spokesperson for the Ghanaian charity OrphanAid Africa, and the face of luxury ad campaigns.
In 2007, she released a perfume line under her name through Etat libre d’Orange. In 2009, she posed nude in an information campaign on breast cancer for the magazine Marie Claire. She currently lives in France with her two children where she acts and does modeling.
She was selected to be on the jury for the main competition section of the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.
architect, award-winning illustrator, and observer
– June, 2021
Observe, deepen things and elaborate: the sources of creative inspiration – Carlo Stanga
“Creativity is a kind of transcendent energy, very connected with positive thinking. And it’s a powerful element that allows us to make positive, great things – said Carlo Stanga, architect, award-winning illustrator, cities traveller and observer – We have to give creativity the right direction, the positive direction to a change that is in the best way: the main aim of creativity is to change the world, even small changes, but altogether, these changes are making great change.”
Enjoy Carlo Stanga’s provocative talk about the urgent needs of new perspectives on ourselves and the world around us, based on self-awareness and knowledge: only investing more time and energy into observation, deepening things and elaborating, we can access new sources of inspiration enabling our creative process.
Bio: Born in Italy, Carlo Stanga has been always deeply passionate about drawing.
After graduating in Architecture at the Polytechnic of Milan, he chose to further his education attending art and design studies. He collaborated with the premier Italian designer Bruno Munari, an amazing experience that influenced his way to see the world.
As an editorial and advertising illustrator, Carlo works with major Italian magazines and newspapers and with international clients in Europe and in the U.S.
His distinctive style continually wins Italian Illustration awards and the work has been selected by The American Illustration Annual and won the Gold Medal Award in Creative Quarterly’s #15 contest and Awards of Excellence from Communication Arts.
In 2015 he wrote and illustrated I am Milan, followed by I am London and I am New York the first title of a new book collection, published by Moleskine, dedicated to the main cities of the world.
In 2021 he created his first children illustrations for the book ” Zaha Hadid”, written by Eloisa Guarracino, published by Raum Italic, Berlin and Maxxi, Rome.
Carlo lives and works in Berlin.
– November, 2021
The book of our life: why to play in different context, with creativity and curiosity, to stay alive – Joël Andrianomearisoa
“Let’s use the answer of creativity and curiosity to stay alive. I’m still alive because I’m curious. I think that’s the only thing. I think that’s the only answer, because I’m creating something different – said artist Joël Andrianomearisoa – It’s like reading a book. We have the book of our life and we have to create a different rhythm on this book”.
Joël Andrianomearisoa talks about the power of emotions and the plurality of curiosity to nurture his creativity, moving reflections from his sources of inspiration to his role as an artist in society, and much more.
@studiojoelandrianomearisoa on Twitter
Bio: Joël Andrianomearisoa is a Malagasy artist, born in 1977 in Antananarivo, Madagascar. He lives and works between Paris and his birthplace.
The artist’s work develops around a non-explicit, often abstract, narration, which everyone perceives yet cannot put a name to. His world of forms weaves his work into sequences often mired in a deep sadness caused by an absence that is impossible to fill.
And for that he uses, in no particular hierarchical order, sound in its immaterial dimension or the book in its hyper materiality, silky textile or rough plastic, black or the most shimmering colours.
His recent experience at Aubusson of a tapestry that would take six months of work to come to life, reflects this complexity, entangling a flat figuration sketch with the thickest knots of an unknown drama.
Joël Andrianomearisoa’s work has developed over time through different mediums and materials. In recent years, his creations have often been made from textiles, paper, sometimes wood, minerals, or from unexpected objects (mirrors, perfumes, stamps … etc.) with which he reinvents magic and causes the emotion.
This “aesthetic emotion”, often sought and rarely achieved, and which is beyond comment.
What is beyond the common notion of creativity and how can it serve us? How can creativity benefit our journey? How can it contribute solving important social issues like education, inequalities or racial injustice?
TV presenter, producer, author, publisher, successful entrepreneur, Executive Director of Africa No Filter
– October, 2020
How important is for black Africans, to change Africa’s narrative – Moky Makura
”If you want to change the world, first, you have to change the narrative of the world”, and this is especially relevant for Africa, where it is crucial to stop perpetuating the false narratives that for too long have been mutilating the Continent, and free its full potential. “Storytelling is the way we form opinions about each other, and we feel better in telling stories but we need to be sure that these stories are in the right places” says Moky Makura, Executive Director of African No Filter, a donor collaborative organization focused on shifting the African narrative – “when you start challenging people on a story, people react”.
Keywords: African – Agency – Stories
@MokyMakura on Twitter
Bio: Moky Makura was born in Nigeria, educated in England and has lived in London, Johannesburg and Lagos.
She is the Executive Director of Africa No Filter, a donor collaborative focused on shifting the African narrative. Prior to that she was the Deputy Director for Communications Africa at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where she was responsible for building and managing the foundation’s reputation on the continent. In 2017 she took on interim role as the foundation’s Country Representative to South Africa responsible for government relations and internal program coordination. Before joining the Gates Foundation, Moky worked as Communications Director for the Tony Elumelu Foundation in Nigeria. Prior to that she was a well-known TV presenter, producer, author, publisher and a successful entrepreneur in her own right. Moky holds an Honours degree in Politics, Economics and Law from Buckingham University in the UK. As part of her passion to present a positive image of Africa and showcase its heroes and achievements, she created one of the first websites to serve as a repository of positive facts about the continent… Moky started and runs the first storytelling networking event for women called Herstory Joburg. She serves on the advisory boards of three non-profits including Junior Achievement Africa and the Houtbay Partnership. Moky was recently appointed to the board of the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation.
Heba Y. Amin
multi-media artist, researcher and lecturer, cofounder of the Black Athena Collective and a Field of Vision fellow in NYC
– October, 2020
Unlearning Colonialist’s Education to find your truth – Heba Y. Amin
How can artworks become means to explore new narratives? How much can technology help with the development of critical thinking?
This episode with Heba Amin, a Berlin-based multi-media artist, researcher and lecturer, talks about the artist’s role in society, the ambivalent nature of technology, and her quest for personal and social transformation through art.
Keywords: Re-learning – Intervention – Subversion
Bio: Artist Heba Y. Amin (b. 1980, Cairo) is a Berlin-based multi-media artist, researcher and lecturer who looks at the convergence of politics, technology, and architecture. Her works and interventions have been covered by the New York Times, Guardian, Intercept, and CNN, among others. She has had recent solo exhibitions at the Mosaic Rooms (London 2020) and the Center for Persecuted Arts (Solingen 2019) as well as Böttcherstrasse Prize Exhibition (Bremen 2018), 10th Berlin Biennale (Berlin 2018), 15th Istanbul Biennale (Istanbul 2017), 11th African Biennale Photography (Bamako 2017), and 12th Dak’Art Biennale (Senegal, 2016). Amin is the cofounder of the Black Athena Collective and a current Field of Vision fellow (NYC). She also has an extensive repertoire in public speaking and was recently awarded the Sussmann Artist award for artists who are committed to the ideals of democracy and anti-fascism. Furthermore, Amin is one of the artists behind the subversive graffiti action on the set of the television series Homeland, which received worldwide media attention.
eclectic creative, award-winning writer, filmmaker, medical doctor, and CEO of The Africa Center in New York
– November, 2020
Building inclusive cultural institutions – Uzodinma Iweala
“When you have people generating or creating in silos, you get a lot of the foolishness that we see happening right now. You get policy prescriptions that are completely lacking in their creativity because they can’t imagine the future of the continent, and Africa suffers from this a lot” said Uzodinma Iweala, eclectic creative, award-winning writer, filmmaker, medical doctor, and – above all – CEO of The Africa Center in New York, where he created an inclusive and diverse cultural space that puts Africa and its diaspora on the cultural map in the heart of the city. Listen to the stories he shares with us through his three keywords.
Keywords: Political – Empathetic – Power-Conscious
Bio: Uzodinma Iweala is an award-winning writer, filmmaker, and medical doctor. As the CEO of The Africa Center, he is dedicated to promoting a new narrative about Africa and is Diaspora. Uzodinma was the CEO, Editor-In-Chief, and co-Founder of Ventures Africa magazine, a publication that covers the evolving business, policy, culture, and innovation spaces in Africa. His books include Beasts of No Nation, a novel released in 2005 to critical acclaim and adapted into a major motion picture; Our Kind of People, a non-fiction account of HIV/AIDS in Nigeria released in 2012; and Speak No Evil(2018), a novel about a queer first-generation Nigerian-American teen living in Washington, D.C. His short stories and essays have appeared in numerous publications like The New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair and The Paris Review among others. Uzodinma was also the founding CEO of the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria, an organization that promotes private sector investment in health services and health innovation in Nigeria. He sits on the boards of the Sundance Institute, The International Rescue Committee and the African Development Bank’s Presidential Youth Advisory Group. A graduate of Harvard University and the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and a Fellow of The Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University, he lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Senior Director for Strategic Programmes, Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity, Columbia University
– October, 2020
Inner solid structures as the foundation to achieve beauty and justice – Sebabatso Manoeli
“Beauty, justice, and structure”, three words that are part of the personal and political mission to impact society by Sebabatso Manoeli, Senior Director at Columbia University for the Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity program, and also in charge of the podcast “Race Beyond Borders”.
Manoeli shares her vision on how beauty relies on structure, as well as social change requires a structure: an inner and powerful structure that allows us to endure challenging times. On top of this inner structure, when individuals work together as teams, they use structures to bring about the kind of change they envision
“We make sense of the world through narrative: something has a start, a middle, and an end, and that narrative shapes all of our logic, our thinking, our doing – said Manoeli – the power of these ideas of beauty that drives justice or creativity for social change is the narrative potential of it all.”
Keywords: Justice – Beauty – Structure
Follow her podcast “Race Beyond Borders” by Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity
@Smanoeli on Twitter
Bio: At Columbia University, she serves as a Senior Director for Strategic Programmes, Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity – an innovative leadership development programme designed to combat anti-Black racism in South Africa and the United States. Dr Manoeli is also author of Sudan’s “Southern Problem”: Race, Rhetoric and International Relations.
Previously, at the Cape Town-based DG Murray Trust, a public innovator and strategic investor operating at the nexus of public policy and development practice, Dr Sebabatso Manoeli served as Acting Deputy CEO and Innovation Director.
Sebabatso has worked in the fields of politics, academia and development practice. She worked on Transitional Justice and Governance for the Department of Political Affairs at the African Union Commission as a consultant.
In academia, she taught both Masters and Undergraduate students. Most recently, she was a Departmental Lecturer in African History at the University of Oxford, where she was the first African woman faculty member. She has also a Lecturer at Stanford University’s Bing Centre for Overseas Studies and a Teaching Fellow at the University of Fort Hare Institute of Social and Economic Research (FHISER).
At the economic policy advisory firm, the Brenthurst Foundation, she was awarded the Machel-Mandela Fellowship, there, her research focused on Lesotho’s textile industry and Chinese SMMEs in five African countries. She has provided research support for the Dynamics of State Failure and Violence project at the Peace Research Institute of Oslo, and the Oxford Martin Commission for Future Generations.
Her passion for leadership development on the continent led her to work at the Africa List at the CDC Group in London, where she focused on private sector leadership in ten African countries, and at the African Leadership Academy in Johannesburg. She was a Rhodes Scholar at the University of Oxford, where she earned a DPhil in History and an MSc in African Studies. At Amherst College, where she earned a BA in Political Science and Black Studies, Sebabatso was a Mandela Scholar. Dr. Manoeli is also a Senior Fellow of the Moremi Initiative for Women’s Leadership in Africa, and a Salzburg Global Seminar Fellow.
Follow her podcast “Race Beyond Borders” by Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity, about raising new questions about race & Blackness beyond geographical divides.
art curator, artist and activist, Executive Director of the National Gallery of Zimbabwe
– October, 2020
Art as a tool for liberation – Raphael Chikakwa
How can creativity and art contribute to the history of a Country and shape local communities? Why Chimurenga as “revolution of the mind” lays the foundation for Zimbabwe’s new history?
Raphael Chikakwa, a Zimbabwean artist and activist, Executive Director of the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, guides us through the history of his Country – economic struggles, political instability, and regional violence since the 1960s – through the lenses of creativity and activism. He quotes “every revolution starts from the revolution of the mind” and art can be a form of revolution.
Keywords: Chimurenga – Remix – Fertile ground
Bio: Born in Zimbabwe, Chikukwa Raphael is the Executive Director of the National Gallery of Zimbabwe. He joined the National Gallery mid 2010 as the Chief Curator of Contemporary Artand Deputy Director. Previously he had worked mainly as an independent curator. Chikukwa is the founding Curator of the Zimbabwe Pavilion curator at the 54th Venice Biennale 2011 and just curated After Shock: Re Imagining life after Cyclone Idai 2020…
His qualifications and international experience earned this position at the national institution, which he hopes to change the visual arts landscape of Zimbabwe.
The 2nd Johannesburg Biennale in1997 provided an impetus to Raphael’s curatorial career after working as a volunteer guide for the Biennale. He later moved to his home country Zimbabwe as a process of relocation to his motherland. Chikukwa is a founding stuff member of the PUMA funded Creative Africa Network as an editor and advisor of the project from 2008–2009. In 2008, Chikukwa represented Africa at the 2008 Art Basel Miami Conversations in the United States of America. The American Centre Foundation also awarded Raphael a curatorial research grant in 2006–2007 and he travelled in West Africa for his curatorial research.
These episodes are a collection of live talks that were recorded during the first European lockdown, where we explore how creativity could be critical for individual and social resilience, especially in a challenging context of isolation due to the pandemic.
Co-creator, advisor and conductor of AtWork Educational Program
– April, 2020
Reality is the best fiction – Simon Njami
This episode is about the perception of words, and their light and shadows, we’ll talk about the challenge to rediscover their deeper meaning, their true light within. Words lose their meaning when deprived of their shadows, and become mere slogans.
Words are important because they are the building blocks of our thoughts, and now – during this pandemic – more than before, new words such as confinement or mask have become very common and familiar to everyone. Confinement seems to be THE word of the moment, but confinement could be something different than punishment. And the masks we need to wear could become a communication tool, an invitation to stay behind them and discover more…
Keywords: Confinement – Mask – The Other.
Bio: Simon Njami is a Paris-based independent curator, lecturer, writer and art critic.
Njami was the co-founder and editor-in-chief of Revue Noire, a journal of contemporary African and extra-occidental art. He has served as artistic director of the Bamako photography biennale and as cultural advisor for the AFAA (today Institut Français) in their cultural cooperation policy.
He was member of numerous art and photography juries (10 years at Worldpress). He co-curated the first African pavilion at the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007. He has curated numerous exhibitions of contemporary art and photography worldwide. As well as member of the scientific boards of numerous museums.
Njami has published seven books, including essays and novels.
- Soren Kierkegaard,Traité du désespoir
- Jean Paul Sartre, L’existentialisme est un humanisme
- Micheal Foucault, Surveiller et punir
- Emmanuel Levinas, L’autre comme visage
- François Jullien, L’écart et l’autre
- Roland Barthes, La chambre claire
- Jean Paul Sartre, Huis Clos
- Arthur Rimbaud, Poésies
Professor, Senior researcher, philosopher of the cognitive sciences – April, 2020
A new mindset for an institutional change – Roberto Casati
How can we prevent disorientation in terms of getting lost? We need to be super resilient and ready for the next crisis, and it would be possible only by adopting new behaviour and mindset” said Roberto Casati, Senior Researcher with CNRS, professor at École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and Director of Institut Jean Nicod in Paris, working at the boundary of philosophy and cognitive sciences.
Keywords: Institutional Creativity – Disorientation – Super Resilience.
Bio: Roberto Casati is a senior researcher with the French CNRS and professor at EHESS, and currently the director of Institut Jean Nicod in Paris. A philosopher of the cognitive sciences, he has made contributions to the study of visual and auditory objects and of spatial representation. His latest book, The Visual World of Shadows, with Patrick Cavanagh, was published in 2019 by MIT Press. His work on Digital Colonialism has spurred debate in France and Italy. He is currently working on cognitive artifacts and spatial disorientation.
lawyer, writer, Historian and Moleskine Foundation Collection Author – April, 2020
South Africa: a model for resilience? – Lwando Xaso
In times of deep crisis, we often look at South Africa as a model for resilience, considering how much of it the country proved to have through its history. “What happened in South Africa is that we are constantly dealing with a vanishing present, and we use history to eradicate that haziness, but history cannot survive without memory. One of the advantages of today is that we have social media which can hold people’s memories and archives” says Lwando Xaso, one of South Africa’s leading constitutional lawyers, writer and human rights activist.
Keywords: Memory – Sanitization – Transition
Bio: Lwando Xaso, one of South Africa’s leading constitutional lawyers, writer and human rights activist. A self-described “student of change”, Lwando currently works for Constitution Hill Trust, the main partner for the Moleskine Foundation’s WikiAfrica Education program. In 2011 she had the privilege of clerking at the Constitutional Court for Justice Edwin Cameron. She later worked as a senior researcher for the Public Service Remuneration Review Commission in 2013, and was also a researcher to former Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo.
Lwando frequently writes on topics of constitutional and international law for the Daily Maverick, the Business Day and various other publications. She also a trustee of the Constitutional Court Trust, and the founder of Including Society – a forum established to explore issues around inclusion in the private sector.
Last book: “Made in South Africa: A Black Woman’s Stories of Rage, Resistance and Progress”, 2020.
- Lauren Segal, Clive van den Berg and Churchill Madikida – Mapping Memory: Former Prisoners tell their Stories (Book)
- Prof Gabriel Motzkin – Memoirs, Memory and Historical Experience (Journal article)
- Tshepo Madlingozi – Taking Stock of the South African Truth and Reconciliation 20 Years Later – No Truth, No Reconciliation and No Justice
- Lwando Xaso – Truth in Jeopardy as Past Recedes
Senior Research Fellow at the Cambridge School of Art – May, 2020
Art as a caring practice: new connections for social transformation – Elena Cologni
“Caring can be considered in the practical sense of hands-on ‘caring for’, then in the emotional and ethical sense of ‘caring about’, and in the context of the dialogic strategy adopted in my creative work: ‘caring with’…” said Elena Cologni, interdisciplinary artist – drawing, performative and dialogic sculpture – Senior Research Fellow at the Cambridge School of Art, Humanities and Social Sciences at Anglia Ruskin University Distance Learning.
Keywords: Care – Dialogic – Place.
Bio: Elena Cologni lives and works in Cambridge, UK, where she is Senior Research Fellow at the Cambridge School of Art, Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (Anglia Ruskin University).
Cologni gained a BA in Fine Art from Accademia di Belle Arti Brera in Milan, an MA in Sculpture from Bretton Hall College, Leeds University and a PhD in Fine Art and Philosophy from University of the Arts, Central Saint Martin’s College, London, 2004 (CSM).
Cologni was Post Doctorate Research Fellow at CSM (2004/06 funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council), Research Fellow at York Saint John’s University (2007/09), and contributed to the Creativities in Intercultural Arts Network (University of Cambridge) (2013/2016), addressing: research as art practice methodologies, documentation of ephemeral art as the work participatory/dialogic approach, in(ter)disciplinarity.
Seeds of Attachment, 2016/18 (Centre for Family Research, University of Cambridge, Applied Social Science Group, University of Cambridge, New Hall Art Collection, Freud Museum London), with funding from Grants for the Arts, Arts Council England.
CARE: from periphery to centre, 2018, Homerton College, Cambridge (250th Anniversary Artist Fellowship), with Moleskine Foundation Practices of care, on finding the cur(v)e, 2020/21 funded by British Council International development fund, Arts Council England Covid19 emergency fund.
- Susan Buckingham, Gender and Environment, Routledge, 2020
- Laura Cima, Franca Marconin, Ecofemminismo in Italia, 2017
- Cologni, E. 2016. ‘A Dialogic Approach for The Artist as An Interface in An Intercultural Society’. In Burnard, Mackinlay, Powell, The Routledge International Handbook of Intercultural Arts Research New York, London: Routledge
- Eze, M. O. Intellectual History in Contemporary South Africa, pp. 190–191 (Palgrave, 2010)
- Grant Kester, Conversation Pieces: Community and Communication in Modern Art, (University of California Press, 2004).
- Virginia Held, Ethics of Care, Personal Political and Global (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2006
- Doreen Massey, ‘Power-geometry and a progressive sense of place’, in Mapping the Futures, ed. by John Bird et al. (London: Routledge, 1993), 59-69.
- Linda McDowell, ‘Spatializing feminism: geographic perspectives’, in Bodyspace: Destabilizing Geographies of Gender and Sexuality, ed. by Nancy Duncan (London: Routledge 1996), 28-44
- Patrick D. Murphy, ‘Prolegomenon for an Ecofeminist Dialogics’, in Feminism, Bakhtin, and the Dialogic, ed. by Dale M. Bauer and Susan Jaret McKinstry, Albany: State of New York, 1991
- Nel Noddings, Caring: A Feminine Approach To Ethics And Moral Education, Berkeley: University Of California Press, 1986
- David Seamon, ‘Place attachment and Phenomenology: The Synergistic Dynamism of Place’ in Place Attachment: advances in Theory Methods and research ed. by Lynne C. Manzo and Patrick Devine-Wright (New York: Routledge, 2013)
British artist, poet, vocalist, composer, and musician – May, 2020
It’s not true that only when the door is locked nobody enters – Benjamin Clementine and Simon Njami
“I am alone in a box of stone. When all is said and done. As the wind blows to the east from the west. Unto this bed, my tears have their solemn rest… It wasn’t easy getting used to this I used to scream. It’s not true, that it’s only when the door is locked that nobody enters”.
This episode has been inspired by the lyrics of the song “Cornerstone” by Benjamin Clementine, English artist, poet, vocalist, composer – who invented his own dramatic and avant-guard musical dimention – here in conversation with Simon Njami, writer, art critic and, above all, our AtWork Educational Program advisor.
Keywords: Door – Cornerstone – Aftermath.
Bio: Benjamin Sainte-Clémentine is an British artist, poet, vocalist, composer, and musician. Clementine’s debut album At Least for Now won the 2015 Mercury Prize. In February 2019 he was named a knight of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government, in recognition of his contribution to the arts.
Born and raised in London, England, Clementine later moved to Paris, France, becoming homeless as a teenager. There, his performances helped him to become a cult figure in the music and art scene. Moving back to London, he made his TV debut on the BBC programme Later With Jools Holland in 2013. A number of critics described him as becoming one of the great singer-songwriters of his generation and the future sound of London, whilst struggling to place his music in any one genre.
Considered by The New York Times as one of the 28 geniuses who defined culture in 2016, Clementine’s compositions are musically incisive and attuned to the issues of life but also poetic, mixing revolt with love and melancholy, sophisticated lyricism with slang and shouts, and rhyming verse with prose monologues. He moved to popular art music, breaking free from traditional song structure, inventing his own dramatic and innovative musical territory.
- in Patagonia (Bruce Chatwin)
- Giovanni’s Room (James Baldwin)