Arthur Jafa is an artist, filmmaker and cinematographer. Across three decades, he has developed a dynamic practice, comprising films, artefacts and happenings that reference and question the universal and specific articulations of Black being – how can visual media faithfully transmit the equivalent "power, beauty and alienation" embedded within forms of Black music in US culture? His films have won awards at the Los Angeles and New York film festivals. This year he has won the Golden Lion at the 2019 Venice Biennale for best participation in this international, event dedicated to the theme May You Live In Interesting Times, for his film The White Album. His artwork is represented in celebrated collections worldwide including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, in New York; Tate Modern, in London; and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, in Washington, D.C.
A performer, dancer, choreographer and artist, Calixto Neto began studying music at the Federal University of Pernambuco, and later studied dance at the Centre Chorégraphique National de Montpellier, where he completed his MA. Between 2007 and 2013, he was a member of Lia Rodrigues Dance Company and also worked with the choreographers Claudio Bernardo, Volmir Cordeiro, and Gerard & Kelly. Calixto Neto likes to think about the choreographic field as a place of intersection between notions of identity, representations of the (black) body, and decolonisation. Currently, besides his work, which he develops between creation and pedagogy, he collaborates with the choreographers Mette Ingvartsen and Anne Collod, among other artists.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was born in Enugu, Nigeria in 1977. She grew up on the campus of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, where her father was a Professor and her mother was the first female Registrar. She studied medicine for a year at Nsukka and then left for the US at the age of 19 to continue her education on a different path.
She graduated summa cum laude from Eastern Connecticut State University with a degree in Communication and Political Science.
She has a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing from Johns Hopkins University and a Master of Arts degree in African History from Yale University. She was awarded a Hodder fellowship at Princeton University for the 2005-2006 academic year, and a fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute of Harvard University for the 2011-2012 academic year. In 2008, she received a MacArthur Fellowship.
She has received honorary doctorate degrees from Eastern Connecticut State University, Johns Hopkins University, Haverford College, Williams College, the University of Edinburgh, Duke University, Amherst College, Bowdoin College, SOAS University of London, American University, Georgetown University, Yale University, Rhode Island School of Design, and Northwestern University.
Ms. Adichie’s work has been translated into over thirty languages.
Her first novel, Purple Hibiscus (2003), won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, and her second novel, Half of a Yellow Sun (2006), won the Orange Prize. Her 2013 novel Americanah won the US National Book Critics Circle Award, and was named one of The New York Times Top Ten Best Books of 2013.
She has delivered two landmark TED talks: her 2009 TED Talk The Danger of A Single Story and her 2012 TEDx Euston talk We Should All Be Feminists, which started a worldwide conversation about feminism, and was published as a book in 2014.
Her most recent book, Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions, was published in March 2017.
She was named one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2015. In 2017, Fortune Magazine named her one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders. She is a member of both the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Ms. Adichie divides her time between the United States and Nigeria, where she leads an annual creative writing workshop.
Image credits: © Wani Olatunde
Christina Sharpe is a Professor at York University, Toronto, in the Department of Humanities, and Distinguished Visiting Professor at Ryerson University. Her academic research focuses on English literature and Black Studies, addressing Black visual studies, Black queer studies, and mid-nineteenth century to contemporary African-American Literature and Culture. She is the author of Monstrous Intimacies: Making Post-Slavery Subjects (2010) and In the Wake: On Blackness and Being (2016) - named by The Guardian and The Walrus as one of the best books of 2016 and a nonfiction finalist for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. She is currently working on a monograph called Black. Still. Life.
Clémentine Deliss is a curator, publisher, and cultural historian based in Berlin. She studied contemporary art and semantic anthropology and holds a Ph.D from the University of London. Her work addresses historical and contemporary iterations of global artists’ networks, the experimental remediation of ethnographic collections, and the articulation of artistic practice and transdisciplinarity through publishing and other media. She is a Professor for Curatorial Theory and Dramaturgical Practice at the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design, and a Guest Professor of Theory and History at the University of Fine Arts Hamburg.
Coco Fusco is an interdisciplinary artist and Cuban-American writer, whose work explores politics of gender, identity, ethnicity, and power in multimedia productions that include large-scale projections, closed-circuit television, performances broadcast live via the Internet, and interactive audience performances. Her video works and performances have been featured in various international exhibitions and biennials. Her most recent book is Dangerous Moves: Performance and Politics in Cuba (2015). Coco Fusco has received many awards and distinctions, including the Rabkin Prize for Art Criticism, the Greenfield Prize, or the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts; as well as Fulbright, Guggenheim, Cintas and US Artists scholarships. Coco Fusco is represented by Alexander Gray Associates in New York.
Crystallmess, born in France under the birth name Christelle Oyiri, whose family roots stem from the Ivory Coast and Guadaloupe, is a producer, DJ, writer and artist. The polyrhythmic, eclectic style of her electronic dance music – which oscillates freely between melodic techno, afro-trance and abrasive dancehall – gives her a globalised and diasporic definition. She participated in the SHAPE platform, an iniciative that promotes innovation in music and the arts, and was a NTS Radio online resident. Her radical energy and the afro-guitarist environment she creates in her DJ Sets and performances has seduced the world’s finest clubs, including De School, Saule/Berghain, Corsica Studios and Concrete, sharing key slots with Helena Hauff or Lotic, and creating sound designs for fashion houses such as Kenzo or Paco Rabanne.
Actor, producer and humanitarian Danny Glover has been a commanding presence on screen, stage and television for more than 30 years. As an actor, his film credits range from the blockbuster Lethal Weapon franchise to smaller independent features, some of which Glover also produced. For Glover’s philanthropic efforts, he has received a 2006 DGA Honor and was honored with a 2011 “Pioneer Award” from the National Civil Rights Museum. Internationally Glover has served as a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Program. Currently Glover serves as Ambassador for the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent. In 2005, Glover co-founded Louverture Films, a company dedicated to the development and production of films of historical relevance, social purpose, commercial value and artistic integrity.
Born in Tanzania to Ghanaian parents, Sir David Adjaye OBE is the principal and founder of Adjaye Associates. His broadly ranging influences, ingenious use of materials and sculptural ability have established him as an architect with an artist’s sensibility and vision. His largest project to date, Smithsonian Institution National Museum of African American History and Culture, opened on the National Mall in Washington DC in fall of 2016 and was named Cultural Event of the Year by the New York Times. In 2017, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II and was recognized as one of the 100 most influential people of the year by TIME magazine.
Arthur Jafa é artista e cineasta. Nas últimas três décadas tem vindo a desenvolver uma prática artística dinâmica, que abrange filme, artefactos e happenings que questionam as articulações universais e específicas do ser negro – como podem os meios visuais transmitir fielmente “o poder, a beleza e a alienação” intrínsecos de certas formas de música negra da cultura dos Estados Unidos? Os seus filmes foram aclamados nos festivais de cinema de Los Angeles e Nova Iorque, tendo este ano sido galardoado com o Leão de Ouro da Bienal de Veneza para a melhor participação na exposição internacional, May You Live In Interesting Times, pelo seu filme The White Album. A sua obra está representada em numerosas coleções de prestígio mundial, nomeadamente: Metropolitan Museum of Art e MoMA, Nova Iorque; Tate Modern, Londres; e Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC.
Elizabeth A. Povinelli is an anthropologist and filmmaker. She is a professor of Anthropology at Columbia University, New York and one of the founding members of the Karrabing Film Collective. Her written work focuses on the development of a critical theory of late liberalism that underlies an alternative anthropology, developed from an ongoing relationship with indigenous colleagues in Northern Australia. She has written five books and numerous essays and won the Lionel Trilling Book Award for Geontologies: A Requiem to Late Liberalism. Karrabing's films have been featured internationally at film festivals, museums, and other cultural events, notably in the Forum Expanded section of the Berlinale; the MIFF - Melbourne International Film Festival; the Tate Modern, London; or documenta 14, Kassel.
Ernesto Neto studied sculpture at the Parque Lage School of Visual Arts and conducted urban intervention and sculpture courses at the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro. His artistic practice lies between sculpture and installation, often creating large, immersive environments, which take the form of organic worlds that solicit viewer interaction. His work has been featured in solo exhibitions at institutions such as the Helsinki Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, or the Guggenheim Bilbao, among many others, and at the Venice, Zurich or Lyon biennials. His works are included in major international collections, including the Centre Pompidou, MoMA, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía or the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC.
Eszter Salamon is an artist and performer. Since 2001, she has been creating solo and group works that have been presented in performing arts venues and festivals throughout the world. She is frequently invited to present her work in museums, including MoMa, Witte de With, Fondation Cartier, Serralves, Museum der Moderne Salzburg, Akademie der Künste Berlin, Museo Reina Sofia. Eszter Salamonʼs work revolves around choreography employed as a means of navigating between different media such as sound, text, voice, image, bodily movements and actions. In 2014, she started a series of works exploring both the notion of monument and the practice of speculating on history making. Eszter Salamon is the laureate of the Evens Art Prize 2019.
Fiesta Warinwa holds an M.S. in Wildlife Conservation and Management from University of Reading, United Kingdom. She currently serves as Director in charge of Policy Engagement at the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), prior to that she was AWF-Director of Corporates and Foundations – Africa and Country Director, Kenya. She has 20 years of professional experience in conservation and development with 14 years in providing leadership at different levels in the execution of AWF's strategy and programs in East Africa across various landscapes, including Samburu, Mau, as well as the Kilimanjaro – trans-boundary landscape covering Southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania.
Fred Moten’s areas of study and practice are Black Studies, Critical Theory, Performance Studies, and Poetics. Moten, the author of many books, the latest of which are All That Beauty and consent not to be a single being, is now primarily engaged in ongoing collaborations with theorist Stefano Harney (they are co-authors of The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study and A Poetics of the Undercommons) and artist Wu Tsang (they are authors of Who Touched Me?). He lives in New York and teaches in the Department of Performance Studies at New York University.
Beasley’s practice traverses sculpture, photography, sound and performance. Recent solo exhibitions include The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; Hammer Projects, Los Angeles; and The Studio Museum in Harlem, Morningside Park, New York. In recent years, Beasley has activated his sculptures at venues including The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts, University of Houston, TX; The Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; The Dallas Museum of Art; and The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.
Known for her ritual dance music, with influences such as Nina Simone, Grace Jones, Missy Elliott or Kate Bush, Lafawndah has been drawing worldwide attention for her futuristic approach to pop and electronics. This will be her first performance in Porto.
The path to her current incarnation as a pop polymath has been as unpredictable as her style of composition, with influences, approaches, and ideologies that intentionally, and on a self-proclaimed basis, defy categorisations of geography or gender. Her career has already included a number of highlights and collaborations, such as her acclaimed performance with Tirzah and Kelsey Lu at London's South Bank or work with Japanese ambient music legend, Midori Takara, at the Barbican.
At the Casa da Música she will present her first album, Ancestor Boy (2019), which reveals a pop that is neither imperial nor local, but exudes an emancipatory spirit of movements and ideas and reveals her as an artist without limits of range, scale and intensity. Her passage through musical and artistic circles has been defined by a freedom of tone, a surrealistic sense of space and a secure manipulation of formal and psychological tension.
Naeem Mohaiemen combines essays, films, and installations to research socialist utopia and incomplete decolonizations. He is author of Prisoners of Shothik Itihash (Kunsthalle Basel, 2014), co-editor (w/ Lorenzo Fusi) of System Error: War is a Force that Gives us Meaning (Sylvana, 2007) and co-editor (w/ Eszter Szakacs) of Solidarity Must be Defended (Tranzit/ Van Abbe/ Salt/ Tricontinental, forthcoming). Naeem was a 2014 Guggenheim Fellow and a 2018 Turner Prize nominee. He recently exhibited at Qattan Foundation (Ramallah), Tate Britain (London), MoMA PS1 (New York), Abdur Razzaq Foundation (Dhaka), and documenta 14 (Athens/Kassel). He is a PhD candidate in Anthropology at Columbia University.
The activist Sônia Guajajara is from the Guajajara /Tentehar, based in the forests of the Arariboia indigenous land, in the state of Maranhão, Brazil. The daughter of illiterate parents, she has a BA Hons degree in Literature and Nursing and a postgraduate degree in Special Education from the State University of Maranhão. She began her indigenous and environmental activism as a young woman and soon gained international prominence for her struggle to defend indigenous people's rights. Guajajara has a voice in the UN Human Rights Council and has led complaints to the World Climate Conferences (COP) and the European Parliament, among other international bodies. She has received numerous awards, including the Order of Cultural Merit Award from the Brazilian Ministry of Culture, presented in 2015 by then-president Dilma Rousseff.
After completing her academic background in physics, Vandana Shiva dedicated herself to inter-disciplinary research in science, technology, and environmental policy. In 1982, she founded the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology in Dehra Dun, dedicated to independent research to address ecological and social issues, in close partnership with local communities and social movements. In 1991, she founded the Navdanya, a movement to protect the diversity and integrity of living resources, that promotes native seeds, organic farming, and fair trade. She has been identified by Time Magazine as an environmental “hero” and by Forbes as one of the top Seven most Powerful Women on the Globe. She has received various awards, including the Right Livelihood Award and Global 500 Award of UN. Shiva has received honorary Doctorates from the Universities of Paris, Western Ontario, Oslo and Guelph.
Vivian Caccuri lives and works in Rio de Janeiro. She uses sound as the vehicle to cross experiments in sensory perception with issues related to history and social conditioning. Through objects, installations, and performances, her works create situations that disorient everyday experience and, by extension, disrupt meanings and narratives seemingly as ingrained as the cognitive structure itself. She composes, produces, and mixes her sound works and often collaborates with musicians such as Arto Lindsay and Gilberto Gil. Having started her research and writing at Princeton University, during her master’s degree in Musicology, her book “Music is What I Make” won the Funarte Prize of Music Criticism in 2014.
Wu Tsang's work as a filmmaker and visual artist is concerned with hidden histories, marginalized narratives, and the act of performing itself. Tsang re-imagines racialized, gendered, and ethnic-based representations beyond the visible frame. She is an award-winning artist and her projects have been presented internationally at many museums and film festivals, including: MoMA, New York; Guggenheim Museum; Tate Modern, London; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Antenna Space, Shanghai; Kuandu Museum, Taipei; MCA, Chicago; MOCA and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Berlinale Film Festival; SANFIC, Santiago de Chile; Hot Docs Festival, Toronto; and South by Southwest Film Festival, Austin. Tsang was awarded scholarships from the Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundations and received the MacArthur “Genius” Award.