Arthur Jafa2018

At the forefront of thinking through how Blackness is rendered, imagined and lived in society, artist, filmmaker and theorist Arthur Jafa draws from his substantial film and still image archive to make bold, visceral films and room-size installations that lay bare anguish, outrage, power, history, cultural memory, rupture, pleasure, and repair. Placing one resonant cultural artifact – footage whether newly shot or found – next to another, through astute juxtaposition of images and ideas, coupled with lyrical, syncopated editing he renders both the beauty of a ‘new harmonic’ and searing critique. Renowned for his cinematography (on Julie Dash’s pioneering film Daughters of the Dust, as well as in films by Spike Lee, Isaac Julien, and John Akomfrah), Jafa has exhibited his work at the MET, the Hammer, Gavin Brown Enterprises and throughout Europe, at the Serpentine Gallery in London, the Julia Stoschek Collection, etc.

“In every instance in which transformative art happens, it's never about individual works. Conversation pieces, not masterpieces. It always happens in discourse, in relation, in exchange…”

photo: Robert Hamacher