Curatorial Intensive Symposium: Addis Ababa

Curatorial Intensive Symposium in Addis Ababa
Public Symposium
Monday, May 19, 2014
British Council

FREE and open to the public

Join ICI’s participants of the Curatorial Intensive in Addis Ababa, in collaboration with Zoma Contemporary Art Center (ZCAC), for a public symposium at the British Council, where they will present their exhibition and project proposals. From May 13–May 19, 2014, this program offered curators the opportunity to explore art production and international connections currently developing in Ethiopia, while discussing among colleagues, the concepts, logistics, and challenges of organizing exhibitions globally. Click HERE for more information on the program.

Participants include: Philip Balimunsi (Kampala, Uganda), Helen Carey (Limerick, Ireland), Makeda Damtew (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia), Mohamed Hussein (Baghdad, Iraq), Mihret Kebede (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia), Wanja Kimani (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia), Anna Kucma (Kampala, Uganda / Krakow, Poland), Georgina Maxim (Harare, Zimbabwe), Jillian Schultz (Los Angeles, CA, USA), Fitsum Tefera (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia), and Zoma Wallace (Washington DC, USA).

The Curatorial Intensive Symposium is made possible, in part, by the support of the British Council.

May 19, 2014

British Council
Comoros Street
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia


Balimunsi Philip

Born of Kabuye Benedict family, Balimunsi Philip is the curator of Uganda National Cultural Centre and the Uganda National Gallery known as Nommo gallery.  His curatorial focus steers towards documentation and shaping the arena of experience to grant viewers a glimpse into an exhibition of memories and a creative mist of conversations. His practice explores the intellectual explosion of artistic quandary in relation to creativity as a social response to human interaction with extremely difficult spheres of life.  He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial and Fine Arts from Makerere University and received curatorial training from ICI’s Curatorial Intensive in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and at the School for Curatorial Studies Venice by A Plus Gallery-Venice, Italy during the 2019 58th Venice biennial to pave way for processes of organising a Ugandan pavilion at the Venice Biennial. He is a co-curator of the Know Go Zone, Dance in the City, KLAART014 and a curator of the DADs and Climate Change exhibitions with Embassy of Sweden, JAMAFEST visual arts pavilion with UVADA, Know Way Out with Belgian embassy, Art Creates Water, Hope Art exhibition, a retrospective of 25 years of Bruno Sserunkuuma’s Ceramic Philosophy, and Anecdotes of Origin. He’s previously published articles with Start Journal, ICI, JAMAFEST magazine, and contemporary And.

Helen Carey

Helen Carey is Director/Curator of Limerick City Gallery of Art, Limerick, Ireland where she curated the exhibitions PATRICK JOLLEY, STRIKE!, LABOUR & LOCKOUT, UPENDING 2013, and Michael Warren: New Work 2014, among others. Carey has collaborated with Goldsmiths College, LAND I LABOUR I CAPITAL, and Fire Station Artists Studio Art and Responsibility Seminar with curators Galit Eilat & Kuratorisk Aktion in 2013. Previously, Carey was Inaugural Director of the Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris (2002-2007), where she selected the independent exhibitions and projects. Carey was Curator of the TULCA Festival of Visual Art, Galway in 2009. She has been trained in mentoring for disabled artists and museum documentation, as well as holding an MA in Visual Arts Practices (First Class Honours) from the Institute of Art, Design & Technology, and a BA (Honours) in History and Politics from University College Dublin.

Makeda Damtew

Makeda Damtew is a curator and assistant lecturer at Addis Ababa University Alle School of Fine Arts and Design where she advises students and evaluates their work, assisting in the end of the term exhibition at the university gallery. When she is not teaching or curating, Damtew spends her time making art. She has exhibited at different venues, locally and internationally. As a studio artist, Damtew holds a BA in Marketing Management from Addis Ababa University Commercial College (2006) and a BFA in Painting from Addis Ababa University Alle School of Arts and Design (2010).

Mohamed Hussein

Mohamed Hussein is a freelance artist, curator and designer from Baghdad. His practice-based research investigates and questions the boundaries between architecture, design, fine art, and curatorial practice, seeking for vital techniques for mediating the public’s reactions to art and its contexts. His multifaceted projects include public interventions, installations, videos, texts, sculptures, and drawings as a sort of discursive argument. He received an MA in Curating from Chelsea College, London (2010), BA from Academy of Fine Arts, Baghdad (2004), and Diploma, Fine Arts Institute, Baghdad (2000). He has curated a number of shows and workshops and delivered presentations and lectures at art institutes and venues. His work has been exhibited in various solo and group exhibitions, including: Art Forum, Contemporary Art Centre, Baghdad (2013); Cover, Göteborgs Konsthall, Göteborg; As The Land Expands, Al Riwaq Art Space, Manama (2011); he is too young to be punk, CornerHouse, Manchester (2010); The 5th International Sculpture Symposium, National Gallery, Amman; In Focus, Contemporary Art Platform, London (2007); Hot Art, Cold Cash, Cologne Fine Art, Cologne; Skulptur-Biennale Munsterland, Kreis Borken; Berliner Kunstsalon, Berlin (2005); I see the mirror, Kunst Rai, Amsterdam (2003); 2013 A-I-R Curatorial Laboratory, Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, among others. He has participated in Artist-in-Residence Programs at Art Omi International New York (2009); Goyang Art Studio, National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul (2006); AWIA contemporary workshop, Aley, Lebanon (2005) and Kunstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral, Bad Ems, Denmark (2004).

Mihret Kebede

Mihret Kebede is an artist/poet, who graduated from Addis Ababa University School of Fine Arts and Design in painting with distinction in 2007 and has earned her MA in arts from the same school in 2016. She has received a certificate award of recognition as the best practicing artist in 2013 from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Ethiopia. Mihret Kebede has participated in several local and international art exhibitions, workshops, poetry performances, art residencies, and collaborative art projects. Beyond her artistic practices she is also well known for organizing local and international artistic events and festivals. Among her numerous involvements in organizing artistic events Mihret is a co-organizer and founding member of Addis video art festival together with the initiator of the festival Ezra Wube, a founding Manager of a popular monthly poetry and jazz event, and a founding director of Netsa Art Village. She also did several collaborative poetry and jazz projects and performances with Studio Olafur Eliasson, followed by her show in the studio in 2012. She is currently a PhD-in-practice program candidate at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna with a working title Conversing with Silence.

Wanja Kimani

Wanja Kimani is a visual artist and writer based in Cambridgeshire, UK. Her visual practice weaves stories and visual histories, which explore and reflect upon the fragility of memory, the imagination, loss and trauma. She imposes elements of her own life into public spaces, creating a personal narrative where she is both author and character. The work is trans-medial encompassing performance, installation, film and textiles.  In 2016, her work was featured at the 12th Biennial of Contemporary African Art in Dakar, Senegal and as part of the touring exhibition, ‘Kabbo Ka Muwala – The Girl’s Basket: Migration and Mobility in Contemporary Art in Southern and Eastern Africa’ at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Harare, Makerere Art Gallery, Uganda and Städtische Galerie Bremen, Germany. In 2017, her video work was part of the exhibition ‘Landscapes of the Body’ at Art Paris Art Fair, Paris, France. In 2018, she participated in Laboratoire Agit’Art’s exhibition at Dak’Art.  She is founder of Guzo Art Projects; an artist-led initiative, which aims to support artistic practice through commissioning, researching and facilitating exhibitions and events in borrowed spaces. The first exhibition will launch in London in September 2018.

Anna Kućma

Anna Kućma is a Kampala-based independent Polish curator, writer, and art project manager. Born and raised in Krakow, Poland, she has been working as a curator in East Africa for 3 years, where she has independently and collaboratively conceptualized and realized several exhibitions. While writing her dissertation, entitled “The Many Ways of Leaving Venice“ which investigated the process of biennialization and its effects on large-scale contemporary art exhibitions, she became immersed in the strategies of display and the ways of communicating and mediating art with the public. While working in one of Kampala’s more prominent contemporary art galleries, she developed a strong interest in photography, which led her to start the Uganda Press Photo Award (UPPA), a platform for Ugandan photographers to share their experiences, learn new skills, and exhibit their work to a wider public. She has curated “Photojournalism in Uganda. Past-Present-Future,” “Eyes on the Ground,” and most recently “The Gulu Project,” a photography exhibition by Anne Ackermann, co-curated with Marc Prüst. She is a contributor to Addis Rumble, and has written for the Start Journal of Arts and Culture, Fotota Perspectives africaines en photographie, and Fotografija Magazine (pending publication). Currently, she divides time between the UPPA, working as an advisor for the LaBa Art Festival, and personal research and writing. Kućma hold a MA in Cultural Policy and Management and a BA in International Relations.

Georgina Maxim

Georgina Maxim studied Creative Art and Design and Applied Art and Design with Chinhoyi University of Technology, Zimbabwe. Currently she is practicing as an artist, and works at Gallery Delta Foundation for Art and the Humanities as a Gallery Manager and Assistant in curating 12 to 15 exhibitions a year.  She is also the Co-Founder of Village Unhu, an open art studio, which is an artist initiative that provides working space and engagement to artists in residency programs, workshops and exhibitions. Village Unhu, in collaboration with Alliance Francaise, curate 4 exhibitions a year for young and upcoming artists from 2013 to 2016. She is a volunteer art teacher at a local government school as part of the art education and culture development program, established and designed by Village Unhu. Her work has been shown in several exhibitions at Gallery Delta, National Gallery of Zimbabwe, and Village Unhu, and also included in permanent collections in Australia and Holland. She recently won an award for first prize in an art exhibition “Women at the Top” at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe.

Jillian Schultz

Jillian Schultz, originally from Chicago, recently relocated to Los Angeles after five years in Beijing, China. Experienced in exhibition/event production, curating, research, editing, public programming and museum education, Jillian is interested in exploring art as a catalyst for international exchange and cooperation. Before relocating to China, she spent five years working in Conservation and Collections Management for the Asian Art Department of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. In 2008, Jillian was a recipient of the prestigious Blakemore Freeman Fellowship for intensive Chinese language studies at Tsinghua University’s Inter-University Program. From 2009 to 2013, she acted as the Director of International Programming at Three Shadows Photography Art Centre, China’s premier nonprofit organization dedicated to the display and promotion of lens-based media. She curated and produced exhibitions for all three editions of Caochangdi PhotoSpring — Arles in Beijing, Bejing’s first international photography festival. She also oversaw the launch of Three Shadows’ revamped educational initiative, inviting leading international curators, critics, and professors to Beijing to teach local students. In addition to pursing various independent curatorial and consulting projects, she currently acts as the Managing Director for Emerging Art Leaders/Los Angeles, an organization dedicated to providing professional development, mentorship, and advocacy training opportunities for the next generation of art leaders in the Los Angeles area. She studied art history and Asian studies as an undergraduate at Tulane University and received her MA in Art History from Columbia University.

Fitsum Shebeshe

Fitsum Shebeshe is a curator and painter based in Baltimore and Washington DC. He is currently the Gallery Director at Harmony Hall Regional Center in Fort Washington, Maryland. Before moving to the United States in 2016, he was Assistant Curator at the National Museum of Ethiopia. In 2012, Shebeshe co-founded the 1957 Initiative to annually celebrate the liberation of African countries from colonialism through the arts. In 2013, he curated the 1957 Art Show at the National Museum of Ethiopia on the occasion of the 50th Golden Jubilee Anniversary of the African Union, and in 2017, he was the curator of Depart Africa, at the Baltimore School for the Arts. Shebeshe holds a Masters of Fine Arts in Curatorial Practice from the Maryland Institute College of Art.

Zoma Wallace

Zoma Wallace is a curator, arts administrator, and experimental artist living and working in her hometown of Washington, DC. Since opening her first exhibition as part of the Maryland Art Place’s Curator’s Incubator in 2008, her exhibitions have since explored juxtapositions of seemingly disparate entities to reveal unseen, complex, interdependent relationships. In 2013, Wallace lectured on the performance work of Wilmer Wilson IV at the James A. Porter Colloquium on African American Art and collaborated with artist iona rozeal brown to develop an interactive, biodegradable mural of origami, using seeded paper folded by public viewers. Currently, she serves as Curator & Art Collections Manager for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Washington’s sole government agency dedicated to the advancement of arts and culture in the city. There, she manages the city’s growing collection of fine artwork and public art while creating a dynamic exhibition calendar for the city-owned Gallery at 200 Eye. She also serves on the Visual Arts Committee for the esteemed, non-profit DC Arts Center. Wallace holds a BA from Spelman College and MFA in painting from Howard University.

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