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Otobong Nkanga, A Lapse, a Stain, a Fall, ar/ge kunst, Bolzano, 2018
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Otobong Nkanga, <em>Bruises and Lustre</em>, 2015, performance, 9'38
About

Otobong Nkanga studies the social and topographical changes of the environment around her.  By exploring the notion of land as a place of non-belonging, Nkanga provides an alternative meaning to the social ideas of identity. Paradoxically, she brings to light the memories and historical impacts provoked by humans and nature. The artist’s research unites all of the various components that make up our environment, observing the inherent complexities of resources like soil and earth and their potential values in order to provoke narratives and stories about the land.

As an anthropologist—tracing the violent means by which contested minerals and objects are exhumed from their natural environments–Nkanga places the various occurrences of the colonization process in a contemporary context. By doing this, the artist re-imagines our relationship to our everyday environment, and raises questions about the historical structure of a place, both physically and metaphysically.

Otobong Nkanga (Kano, Nigeria, 1974) lives and works in Antwerp, Belgium.
Her most recent solo exhibitions include A Lapse, a Stain, a Fall, ar/ge kunst, Bolzano (2018); To Dig a Hole that Collapses Again, MCA Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2018); Wetin You Go Do?, The Tanks at Tate Modern, Blavatnik Building, London (2017); The Encounter That Took a Part of Me, Kunsthal Aarhus, Aarhus (2017); The Encounter That Took a Part of Me, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham (2016); Diaoptasia, Tate Modern, London (2015); Comot Your Eyes Make I Borrow You Mine, Kadist Art Foundation FR, Paris (2015); Crumbling Through Powdery Air, Portikus, Frankfurt (2015).

Additionally, her work has been included in institutional group exhibitions as Artes Mundi 2018, National Museum Cardiff, Cardiff (2018); Cosmogonies, au gré des éléments, Musée d'art moderne et d'art contemporain (MAMAC), Nice (2018); General Rehearsal, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow (2018); Documenta 14, Athens / Kassel (2017); I am a native foreigner, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (2017); Take Me (I’m Yours), Pirelli Hangarbicocca, Milan (2017); Dialogues, Manifesta – The European Biennial of Contemporary Art, Amsterdam (2017); Life Itself, Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2016); Museum on/off, Centre Pompidou, Paris (2016); 13th Biennale de Lyon, La vie moderne, Lyon (2015).

CV

Solo Shows
2018

A Lapse, a Stain, a Fall, ar/ge kunst, Bolzano, Italy
To Dig a Hole that Collapses Again, MCA Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, USA
Transition, Mendes Wood DM, Brussels, Belgium
2017
The Breath from Fertile Grounds, Temple Bar Gallery + Studios, Dublin, Ireland
Wetin You Go Do?, The Tanks at Tate Modern, Blavatnik Building, London, UK
The Encounter That Took a Part of Me, Kunsthal Aarhus, Aarhus, Denmark
2016
The Encounter That Took a Part of Me, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK
Cracks Around The Corner, Galerie In Situ Fabienne Leclerc, Paris, France
MATRIX 260, University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA), Berkeley, USA
Landversation Beirut, Beirut Art Center, Beirut, Lebanon
2015
Fragments, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Diaoptasia, Tate Modern, London, UK
Bruises and Lustre, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp (M HKA), Antwerp, Belgium
Comot Your Eyes Make I Borrow You Mine, Kadist Art Foundation FR, Paris, France
Crumbling Through Powdery Air, Portikus, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Taste of a Stone, Stedelijk Museum Schiedam, Schiedam, Netherlands
Tracing Confessions, Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany
2012
However long the night, the dawn will break, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Contained Measures of Tangible Memories: Indigo Regina, L'appartement 22, Rabat, Morocco
2010
L' Édition Populaire #1, Vitrinegalerij, Antwerp, Belgium
No Be Today Story O!, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
2009
Pointe Noire Fragments, Centre Culturel Français, Pointe Noire, République du Congo
Baggage 1972.2007/08, Kunsthalle Bern, Bern, Switzerland
Baggage 1972.2007, De Appel, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Group Shows
2019

Hand Drawn,Action Packed, Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea, UK
A World View, Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery, Toowoomba, Australia
Hand Drawn,Action Packed, Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow, UK
A World View, Gympie Regional Gallery, Gympie, Australia
2018
Hand Drawn, Action Packed, Wolverhampton Art Gallery, Wolverhampton, UK
Artes Mundi 8, National Museum Cardiff, UK
A World View, Cairns Art Gallery, Cairns City, Australia
Hand Drawn, Action Packed, St Albans Museums and Galleries Trust c/o Verulamium Museum, Albans, UK
A World View, Gold Cast City Gallery, Gold Coast, Australia
Propositions #6, Basis Voor Actuele Kunst, Utrecht, Netherlands
Cosmogonies, au gré des éléments, Musée d'art moderne et d'art contemporain (MAMAC), Nice, France
Talisman In The Age Of Difference, Stephen Friedman Gallery, London, UK
Take Me (I'm Yours), Villa Médicis - Académie de France à Rome, Rome, Italy
Propositions #5, Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Brussels, Belgium
First Person Plural, Basis Voor Actuele Kunst, Utrecht, Netherlands
General Rehearsal, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow, Russia
A World View, Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville, Australia
Blind Faith, Haus Der Kunst, Munich, Germany
Artefact 2018, STUK – House for Dance, Leuven, Belgium
20 years NICC Jubilee, NICC, Antwerp, Belgium
Nous ne sommes pas le nombre que nous croyons être, Bétonsalon – Centre d’art et de recherche, Paris, France
Naturel pas Naturel, Palais Fesch/Musée des Beaux-Arts, Ajaccio, Corsica
2017
A World View, Gladstone Regional Gallery & Museum, Gladstone, Australia
Ouvert la Nuit, Villa Médicis, Rome, Italy
Ecce Homo-Zie de mens, Sint-Joriskerk, Antwerp, Belgium
Take Me (I’m Yours), Pirelli Hangarbicocca, Milan, Italy
Manipulate the World, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden
Dada Africa, Musée de L’Orangerie, Paris, France
Propositions #1: What we Mean, Utrecht, Netherlands
Être pierre, Musée Zadkine, Paris, France
I am a native foreigner, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Netherlands
Musée en Œuvre(s), Centre Pompidou, Paris, France
Lives Between, Rachel & Israel Pollak Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel
Action!, Kunsthaus Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland
Documenta 14, Kassel, Germany
The Collection, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, Belgium
M HKA Heropent, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium
Envision 2116, Shanghai Project Phase 2 - Seeds of Time, Shanghai Himalayas Museum, Shanghai, China
Tous, des sang-mêlés, Musée D’Art Contemporain du Val-de-Marne, Vitry-Sur-Seine, France
The Absent Museum, Wiels Centre D’Art Contemporain, Brussels, Belgium
Dialogues, Manifesta – The European Biennial of Contemporary Art, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Neither., Mendes Wood DM, Brussels, Belgium
Documenta 14, Athens, Greece
Beautiful Africa, La Galerie du 5e, Marseille, France
Kairos Castle, Kastell Van Gaasbeek, Gaasbeek, Belgium
Belgian Art Prize 2017, BOZAR Palais des Beaux-Arts / Paleis voor Schone Kunsten, Brussels, Belgium
L’île aux Mythes - Souvenir de Mwene Mutapa, La Box - Ecole nationale supérieure d'art de Bourges, Bourges, France
Colori, Castello Di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art, Rivoli, Italy
Contour Biennale 8 - Polyphonic worlds: justice as medium, Mechelen, Belgium
Lives Between, Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco, USA
When the Heavens Meet the Earth, The Heong Gallery, Cambridge, UK
Stimulants: Circulation and Euphoria, Tabakalera, San Sebastian, Spain
En toute modestie, Musée International Des Arts Modestes, Sète, France
El Iris de Lucy, CAAM, Las Palmas, Spain
2016
A World View, Queensland Art Gallery / Gallery of Modern Art, South Brisbane, Australia
Georges Adéagbo and Otobong Nkanga, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Laboratoire Espace Cerveau, Institut D’Art Contemporain, Villeurbanne/Rhône-Alpes, Villeurbanne, France
Envision 2116 - Shanghai Project Phase 1, Shanghai Himalayas Museum, Shanghai, China
11th Gwangju Biennale, The Eighth Climate (What Does Art Do), Gwangju, South-Korea
Extracted, University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum, Tampa, USA
Kaleidoscope, Modern Art Oxford, Oxford, UK
Lucy’s Iris, Musée Départemental D’Art Contemporain de Rochechouart, Rochechouart, France
Sonsbeek ’16, Museum Arnhem, Arnhem, Netherlands
Répétition, Boghossian Foundation, Brussels, Belgium
Vigies and Co, Centre D’Art Nei Liicht, Dudelange, Luxembourg
Take Me (I’m Yours), Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, Denmark
The Amsterdam Trail, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Still (the) Barbarians, EVA International - Ireland’s Biennial, Limerick, Ireland
Museum on/off, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France
20th Biennale of Sydney, The future is already here - It's just not evenly distributed, Sydney, Australia
Beyond 2º, Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, USA
Le temps de l'audace et de l’engagement, Institut D’Art Contemporain, Villeurbanne, France
Territorial Drift, Garage Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Netherlands
Life Itself, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden
El iris de Lucy, Museo de Arte Contemporâneo de Castilla Y León, León, Spain
2015
Streamlines, Haus Der Photographie, Hamburg, Germany
Excavating the Contemporary, Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Last Sighting, Daad Galerie, Berlin, Germany
Material Effects, Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, Lansing, USA
Earth Matters, Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, USA
15 Rooms, Long Museum West Bund, Shanghai, China
Take Me (I’m Yours), Monnaie de Paris, Paris, France
13th Biennale de Lyon, La vie moderne, Lyon, France
European Ghosts, MU.ZEE, Oostende, Belgium
Speaking Back, Goodman Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
2014
Meeting Point II, Luman Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Collection Permanente, RAW Material Company - Center for art, knowledge and society, Dakar, Senegal
Szalon, Logan Center Gallery, Chicago, USA
How to (…) things that don’t exist, 31st Bienal Internacional de São Paulo, Brazil
Harvest, Queensland Art Gallery, South Brisbane, Australia
14 Rooms, Messe Basel, Basel, Switzerland
Berlin Biennale 8, Berlin, Germany
Giving Contours to Shadows, Savvy Contemporary, Berlin, Germany
Aerial Views, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Earth Matters, Fowler Museum at UCLA, Los Angeles, USA
Animism, Ashkal Alwan, Beirut, Lebanon
Foreign Exchange, Weltkulturen Museum, Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
Landings: Confrontation and Confession, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
2013
Das Jubiläums festival, Akademie Der Künste, Berlin, Germany
La Mia Scuola di Architettura, Kunst Galleria Museo, Bolzano, Italy
Berliner Herbstsalon, Palais Am Festungsgraben, Berlin, Germany
Shared singularities, Centre D’Art Contemporain, Montreuil, France
PLAY! Recapturing The Radical Imagination, Göteborg International Biennial For Contemporary Art, Göteborg, Sweden
Animism, OCAT, Shenzhen, China
Earth Matters, National Museum of African Art, Washington DC, USA
Ja natuurlijk, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, Den Haag, Netherlands
Re: emerge, Towards a New Cultural Cartography, Sharjah Biennial 11, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
2012
Across the board: Politics of Representation, The Tanks At Tate Modern, London, UK
Shuffling Cards, Art-Cade – Galerie Des Grands Bains Douches De La Plaine, Marseille, France
Trading Style, Weltkulturen Museum, Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
Inventing the World: The artist as Citizen, Biennale Regard Benin 2012, Cotonou, Benin
Reactivation, 9th Shanghai Biennale, Shanghai, China
De Nederlandse identiteit?, Museum de Paviljoens, Almere, Netherlands
Manifest Aanwezig, Kasteel D’Aspremont-Lynden, Oud-Rekem, Belgium
We Face Forward, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, UK
Tropicomania: the social life of plants, Bétonsalon – Center for Art and Research, Paris, France
Groupshow, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Partitions Performances, La Fondation D’Entreprise Ricard, Paris, France
Object Atlas, Weltkulturen Museum, Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
2011
Connect, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Don’t/Panic, Durban Art Gallery, Durban, South-Africa
The Altered Landscape, Nevada Museum of Art, Reno, USA
MärklinWorld, Kunsthal Kade, Amersfoort, Netherlands
The Collectors Show, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Netherlands
L’inattendu du Tout Monde, Art-o-Rama, Marseille, France
All We Ever Wanted, CCA, Lagos, Nigeria
Summer Show, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Outre mesures et programmes radio, La Galerie – Centre D’Art Contemporain, Noisy-Le-Sec, France
Faites Comme Chez Vous, Raw Material Company – Center For Art, Knowledge and Society, Dakar, Senegal
ARS 11, Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Finland
The Western Syndrome, La B.A.N.K Galerie, Paris, France
África. Objetos y Sujetos, Centro de Expositiones Fernán Gómez, Madrid, Spain
2010
World Festival of Black Arts and Culture, Dakar, Senegal
Body Language, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Sentences on the banks and other activities, The Khalid Shoman Foundation, Amman, Jordan
The Production of Space, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, USA
De kunstenaar en zijn collectie – Harald Schole & Harold Schouten, Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Unfixed, CBK, Dordrecht, Netherlands
There is always a cup of sea to sail in, 29th Bienal Internacional de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
Make Yourself at Home, Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, Denmark
A Proposal for Articulating Works and Places, Museo D’Arte Contemporaneo Della Sicilia, Palermo, Italy
África. Objetos y Sujetos, El Centro Cultural Cajastur Palacio Revillagigedo, Gijon, Spain
Festival Theaterformen, Staatstheater Grosses Haus, Braunschweig, Germany
Whose Map is it?, INVIVA, London, UK
Animism, Kunsthalle Bern, Bern, Switzerland
Common Ground, Nieuw Dakota, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Une Aiguille dans une Botte de Foin, Musée Du Quai Branly, Branly, France
Animism, Extra City Kunsthal, Antwerp, Belgium
2009
Roots and Routes, Galerie Sanaa, Utrecht, Netherlands
Arts in Marrakech, 3rd AiM International Biennale, Marrakech, Morocco
A Delicate Touch, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, USA
Diagonal Views, Nieuwe Vide, Haarlem, Netherlands
Autres Mesures, Centre Photographique D’ile de France, Pontault-Combault, France
I Want to be Famous, Galerie Nomad, Brussels, Belgium
This is now, 2, L’Appartement 22, Rabat, Morocco
2008
Re/Presentaciones. Ellas, Casa Africa, Las Palmas, Spain
Delight, Arti Et Amicitiae, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Snap Judgments, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Flow, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, USA
This is now, 1, Johannesburg, South Africa
Snap Judgments, Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Memphis, USA
2007
Snap Judgments, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada
Simmels Gelijk, NDSM-Shipyard, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Africa Remix, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
Allan Kaprow, Kunsthalle Bern, Bern, Switzerland
Snap Judgments, Mexico City, Mexico
2006
Triennale de Luanda, Luanda, Angola
1st Architecture, Art and Landscape Biennial of the Canaries, Las Palmas, Spain
Africa Remix, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden
Snap Judgments, Miami Art Central, Miami, USA
Africa Remix, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan
De Grote Oversteek, Stedelijk Museum Zwolle, MB Zwolle, Netherlands
Fußball, Münchner Stadtmuseum, München, Germany
Shared History, Arti Et Amicitiae, Amsterdam, Netherlands
There and Back: Africa, La Casa Encendida, Madrid, Spain
Snap Judgments, New York, USA
Générique, Galerie 14, Paris, France
2005
African Remix, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France
Heal the world, The Third Line, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Belonging, Sharjah International Biennial 7, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
North / South Lab, Tanzquartier Wien, Vienna, Austria
Africa Remix, Hayward Gallery, London, UK
2004
Flying Circus Project 04, The Black Box, Singapore
Do You Believe in Reality?, 2004 Taipei Biennial, Taipei, Taiwan
Smokescreen, Fokus 2, Kunstverein & Stiftung Springhornhof, Neuekirchen, Germany
Flash Right, Turn Left, Stiching Artwalk, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Free Territory, 26th Bienal Internacional de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
Africa Remix, Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany
Women Artists from Africa No. 4, Galerie Peter Hermann, Berlin, Germany
Epifyten, De klassieke Hortus als voedingsbodem voor hedendaagse kunst, Amsterdam, Netherlands
On Fragile Grounds, Objectif Exhibitions, Antwerp, Belgium
2003
Fractured Gaps, Rijksakademmie Van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam, Netherlands
El Arte Con La Vida, 8th Havana Biennial, Havanna, Cuba
MIP, Center of Experimentation and Information in Art, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Transferts, Palais des Beaux-Arts de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium
2002
Observatorio #3, Camouflage, Brussels, Belgium
Awaiting Pleasures, Rijksakademmie Van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Observatorio #1, Camouflage, Brussels, Belgium
En Direct de Bamako, FNAC, Paris, France
Dessins XXL, Le Lieu Unique, Nantes, France
Dak’Art 2002, 5th Biennale of African Contemporary Art, Dakar, Senegal
Bomboyi, Institut Français à Kinshasa, Kinshasa, Congo
Made in Africa Fotografia 2002, 1st Biennale di Fotografia Africana, Milan, Italy
Classicism & Beyond, Fotofest 2002, Houston, USA
2001
Mémoires intimes d'un nouveau millénaire, 4th Biennale de Bamako, Mali
1999
Toxic, Chateau D’Oiron, Oiron, France



Exhibitions
Otobong Nkanga Transition
Neither.
Curated by Fernanda Brenner
Publications
Otobong Nkanga: To Dig a Hole that Collapses Again Otobong Nkanga
2018
Otobong Nkanga: Luster and Lucre Otobong Nkanga
2017
Drawing People – The Human Figure in Contemporary Art Otobong Nkanga
2015
Wetin You Go Do? (LP) Otobong Nkanga
2015
Object Atlas: Fieldwork in the Museum Otobong Nkanga
2012
The Altered Landscape: Photographs of a Changing Environment Otobong Nkanga
2011
Animism Otobong Nkanga
2010
Smokescreen : Otobong Nkanga Otobong Nkanga
2004
BLINK. Otobong Nkanga No Be Today Story O! Otobong Nkanga
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