Kamile Ofoeme

Access Key: audio description (below)

Artist Kamile Ofoeme has produced a series of new text and image works, to be presented across four billboards in Brent and Clapham. Produced in the style of supermarket advertisements, these photographic works depict foods the artist associates with the Black diasporic community, including yam, black eyed peas, scotch bonnet and garden eggs. Written on top of these foods are the words “adobe”, “home”, “dwelling” and “residence” alongside their dictionary definitions and phonetic guides to their pronunciation. In this juxtaposition of linguistic and visual associations, the artist draws these foods into proximity with the various intertwined histories and legacies of migration that have shaped their arrival into the UK.

During the transatlantic slave trade European slave traders would conduct their raids in West Africa at the peak of the yam growing season, procuring sustenance to ensure their captives would survive the notoriously dangerous transition through the middle-passage. The diet of West Africans was therefore identified to provide a cheap and efficient way of feeding enslaved peoples, and was subsequently transported to various ports in the Caribbean.

Ofoeme’s work is concerned both with these histories, and simultaneously with the many ways Black people have used food to survive on their own terms, to resist and to create a sense of community and solace. Luring the viewer in through the colorful images and large text, Ofoeme wishes both to draw attention to the vitally nourishing uses of food within diasporic communities, and to subtly bring viewers into contact with the historical migration of food and natural resources, a key factor in determining the dietary staples often found in Black diasporic communities today.

Click here to access an audio description transcript of Abode.

DATES AND LOCATIONS:

8 – 11 July: 167 Clapham High Street/Gauden Road, SW4 7XA

11 – 17 July: 125 Clapham High Street, SW4 7SS

18 – 24 July: Walm Lane/26 St Pauls Ave, Willesden Green, NW2 4QU, Brent

25 – 31 July: 14 Dudden Hill Lane, Willesden Green, NW10 2ET, Brent

Kamile Ofoeme is a London-based multi-disciplinary artist working across audio, visual and performative mediums in order to explore identity, class, place and the built environment. Ofoeme earned an MSc in Built Environment Studies in 2021, and a BA in Fine Art and History of Art in 2017.

Website: www.kamileofoeme.com

Instagram: @k_ofoeme