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John Akomfrah

A pioneering artist and film-maker, John Akomfrah OBE (b.1957) was born in Accra, Ghana. Akomfrah was a founding member of the influential Black Audio Film Collective, which started in London in 1982. The pioneering activity by the collective, which included artists David Lawson and Lina Gopaul, whom Akomfrah still collaborates with today, was dedicated to examining issues of Black British identity through film and media – particularly exploring racial tensions in 1980s Britain. Akomfrah, Gopaul and Lawson now work collectively as Smoking Dog Films.

Akomfrah’s works are characterised by their investigations into memory, post-colonialism, temporality and aesthetics and often explore the experience of the African diaspora in Europe and the USA. He has exhibited and screened widely, with solo presentations at Arnolfini, Bristol, Tate Britain, London, MOMA, New York. John’s work Vertigo Sea was presented at the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015.

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