“We are a peer group of artists who are each grappling with contemporary art practice in an exciting array of forms including performance, sound and imagery – the UK is experiencing an interesting moment culturally, economically and politically. We feel that the recent difficulties as experienced by spaces such as Iniva and Richmix are problematic to the Art scene, particularly the current and next generation of artists whom will miss out on opportunities to engage with the pressing issues that the status quo have ignored. To a certain extent, our works relate to each other. And yet, we didn’t know each other’s work, we didn’t know of each other, as artists and peoples? It seems imperative to think through a model in which we can exchange ideas and compare notes, grow together and support each other, quite simply, a network that allows us to get to know each other. Beyond the moments of activity as echoed from art groups such as the Pan African Connection and the BLK Art Group in the 1970s/80s, we feel it is important to come together as a new generation of professionals that will not only tease new questions regarding the positions of British based artists of colour and LGBT communities, but also, to reignite relevant discussions brought about by older generations. We are an already existing group of artists, referring to ourselves as TheNetwork11.”
Larry Achiampong’s practice uses sound, live performance and imagery to explore representations of identity in the digital age and the dichotomies found within a world dominated by facebook/tumblr/youtube-based cultures. He crate-digs the vaults of history, splicing audible and visual qualities of the personal and interpersonal archive-as-material – offering multiple dispositions that reveal the socio-political contradictions in contemporary society.
Achiampong has exhibited, performed and presented projects within the UK and abroad including Tate Britain/Modern; London, David Roberts Art Foundation; London, Modern Art Oxford; Oxford, New Art Exchange; Nottingham, SAVVY Contemporary; Berlin, and Bokoor African Popular Music Archives Foundation; Accra.
Beverley Bennett’s practice revolves around drawing and the perpetual possibilities it possesses. Acts of play evolve into ritualistic, performative, labour intensive actions that generate a greater understanding of the processes of making, allowing the ‘visual’ to become secondary. Current works involve collaborative experiments with sound.
Bennett’s work has been shown nationally and internationally; venues include the Bluecoat Actions, National Portrait Gallery, Radicals and Non-Conformists, Arena Gallery, Process, Unit Gallery, Hong Kong, Residue, National College of Arts Lahore, Slice, and Siena Art Institute, Italy, Drawing Connections. Bennett lives in London and received her MA in Fine Art from Middlesex University, in 2009.
Junior Boakye-Yiadom’s multi –media practice predominantly draws upon lens based materials. Using archive that include video footage, images, text and recorded sound, alongside ready-made objects, creating a mixed media instillation where both past and present material form a live performance.
Boakye-Yiadom graduated from Royal Academy Schools in 2008 and lives and works in London.
Evan Ifekoya is currently working in film, performance and sound to explore the following questions – Is every body a political body?
What role can an artistic exploration into archives of experience play in making sense of the present moment? Ifekoya continues to investigate the ‘queerying’ of popular imagery. By utilising the props of everyday life the aim is to destroy the aura of preciousness surrounding art. Notions of appropriation, authorship and collaboration permeate the work.
Recent Exhibitions include All Of Us Have A Sense Of Rhythm, David Roberts Art Foundation, London (2015), Embodied Spaces, FramerFramed, De Tolhuistuin, Amsterdam (2015) both curated by Christine Eyene, Studio Voltaire OPEN, London (2015) and 30 years of the Future, Castlefield Gallery, Manchester (2014). Recent performances have taken place at David Roberts Art Foundation and Tate Modern, London as well as The Marlborough, Brighton and De Tolhuistuin, Amsterdam (all 2015). Ifekoya also works collaboratively as part of Collective Creativity: Critical reflections into QTIPOC creative practice.
Shepherd Manyika is a London based artist who works with mixed media, drawing narratives from found images. His interests are in representations of identity via the social aspects of every-day life. Shepherd also works with the South London Gallery and Central Saint Martins delivering workshops. Manyika completed a BA in Fine Art from Central Saint Martins in 2011. He recently completed a residency at the Royal Academy School of Arts.
Kamile Ofoeme’s multi-disciplinary practice uses visual, audio and performative means to interrogate notions of perception, race and identity. In his most recent works, which employ video, photography, digital abstraction and print, Ofoeme is exploring the idea of racial hybridity through instinctively choreographed and rhythmic hand gestures.
Ofoeme lives in London and is currently studying on the BA Fine Art and History of Art course at Goldsmiths University.
Ima-Abasi Okon graduated from the Communication Design MA at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design. In 2013 she was awarded Print Fellowship at The Royal Academy Schools in London. Her recent solo show The Fountains Are Decorative And Are Not Water Play Areas, 2014 was the result of a two week micro residency at Supercollider Contemporary Art Projects, Blackpool.
Selected group exhibitions include Atomic Pictures, Paris, 2015 , Navigation: Urban Dialogues, The Red Gallery, London, 2014, Arena, Centre of Contemporary Art in Torun, Poland, 2014, Onsite, Temporary Art Projects, Southend 2013— selected by Andrew Hunt and Mike Nelson and Onto The Breach…, Lokaal 01, The Netherlands, 2013.
Nicola Thomas is an artist whose interests include the transmission of affect upon an audience, whether through performance, film, or sound; and the use of appropriation as a means of disruption, re-interpretation, and re-evaluation of the past. Her work has been shown throughout the UK and internationally. Recent exhibitions and screenings include Night of the Museums, Moscow ; Art 15, London ; and the artist film programme for Art Basel Miami . Two more of her films will be included in the 2015 film programme for Art Basel Miami.
Thomas graduated with an MA from the Royal College of Art in 2013, and in 2011 completed her BA in Fine Art at Central Saint Martins.