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Launching next month, from 13 – 25 August 2019, London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) will host Temporal Deprogramming, a new live commission by Philadelphia-based interdisciplinary artists Black Quantum Futurism, comprising a two-week programme of music, performance, spoken word, talks and workshops set within a new installation in the ICA Lower Gallery. 

Black Quantum Futurism (BQF) is a collaboration between activist, musician and poet Camae Ayewa, and artist, attorney and writer Rasheedah Phillips. Their work sits at the intersection of activism, art and speculative fiction writing, and is centred on a radical artistic methodology inspired by Afrofuturism, Afrodiasporan engagements with space and time, and quantum physics. Through artistic research, music, film and community-based writing projects, BQF offer practical techniques to empower marginalised communities. They focus on helping people to overcome social injustices, such as housing and health, and the difficulty of living in a high-tech world oppressed by linear time constructs. 

The installation comprises recent works including zines, video works, a listening station and a large-scale Black Quantum Futurism ‘event map’. The map is used as a workshop tool to encourage participants to create their own order and pattern in the universe allowing them to exert control over their personal experiences. The listening station incorporates a recording device with which audience members can contribute sound and voice recordings to the project. The video works on display – including All Time is Local (2019), Black Space Agency (2018) and Sharswood Experiment (2017) – consider time’s intimate relationship to space and locality and recover historical memories of autonomous Black communal space-times.

Events occurring throughout Temporal Deprogramming will include contributions from artists whose work addresses themes that include temporality, chronopolitics (which concerns the relationship between politics and time), activism, housing and social justice, and the recovery and preservation of communal histories, memories and stories. Black Quantum Futurism have invited artists Barby Asante and The Otolith Group, musicians Nkisi and Elaine Mitchener, and feminist activists Sisters Uncut East End to contribute works to the live programme, which will take place throughout the two weeks.

Feature image via Black Quantum Futurism

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