Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński, PhD, is a Vienna-based writer, artist and scholar, whose practice encompasses visual and performing arts, photography, filmmaking, and research. Belinda, who has exhibited internationally recently presented her multimedia piece Respire at the 2023 Liverpool Biennial. In November 2022, she was the recipient of the first edition of the ART X Diaspora prize and will be presenting new work at this year's edition of the fair.
Eager to engage with the vibrant cultural milieu of Lagos, Belinda envisions meaningful interactions with individuals shaping the city's artistic landscape. She intends to interface with archives and other repositories of cultural heritage such as film, photography, and museums in Lagos and Nigeria. A keen interest also lies in establishing connections with textile artisans and fellow creatives. Within her journey, Belinda is committed to delving into the intricacies of Yoruba language and aesthetics.
Through this residency, Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński aspires not only to create but also to weave herself into the vibrant tapestry of Lagos' artistic narrative, fostering connections, and embracing the enriching cultural legacy of Nigeria.
What is the current focus of your creative practice?
Expanding my unique artistic voice and aesthetics, as well as preparing for my upcoming show at Phileas: The Austrian Office for Contemporary Art in Vienna. Inspired by my residency in New York, I am planning to return to the medium of photography and use it as a tool for investigating a space that is at once familiar and unfamiliar.
Photographer Credit © Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński still from The Letter (2019)
What drew you to apply for this residency and how do you think it will inform your wider practice?
I applied for the Art X Diaspora Award because I wanted to get the chance to reconnect to Nigeria via my artistic practice. I was also interested in getting in contact with Nigerian professionals from the art context. It is exciting to experience myself in a different context, and thereby to challenge my self-perception as a Black artist who is predominantly in white spaces.
Image Credit © Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński still from Respire (Liverpool), 2023
Can you give us an insight into how you hope to use the opportunity?
I am planning to make good use of my time at G.A.S. Foundation. And I cannot wait to get access to your library. Jumoke Sanwo, the curator of the show at Art X Fair, is very supportive and has already connected me to people I am interested in working with. I do hope that I can build sustainable and therefore lasting relationships which will provide a foundation for what is to come. Let’s see, I might return and dive deeper into all that is there to learn for me, f.e. my Yoruba ancestry.
Image Credit © Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński still from Unearthing. In Conversation (2017)
About Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński
Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński is a Vienna-based writer, artist, and researcher whose works manifest themselves through a variety of media. Rooted in Black feminist theory, she has developed a research-based and process-oriented investigative practice that deals with the condition of Black life in the African diaspora. Doing so, she interlaces varying spaces and temporalities, thereby resisting a clean-cut separation between documentary and speculation. Solo and Group Exhibitions: FotoRio (26.8.-15.11.2023), Liverpool Biennial (9.6.-17.9.2023), You are awaited but never as equals (2023) Coalmine Winterthur, Seven Scenes (2022) Camera Austria Graz, If A Tree Falls In A Forest (2022), Les Recontres d’Arles, Emplotment (2022) Museum Ludwig Budapest, KAS (2022) Centrale Fies, Solo-Exhibition (2021) Kunsthalle Wien e.g. She is represented by Gallery Wonnerth Dejaco in Vienna/Austria.
About the Access ART X Prize
The Access ART X Prize awards early-career artists from Africa and its Diaspora with opportunities to develop their practices, with the intention of setting them up for the highest levels of success on the global stage. The Prize, formerly open only to emerging Nigerian artists, has evolved to include an additional award that is open to emerging artists from all of Africa and its Diaspora, in a bid to buttress sustainable careers for a wider range of artists.
Starting with the 2022/3 edition, one artist is selected from Nigeria for a residency at Gasworks, London and another artist from Africa and its Diaspora is selected to undergo a residency at G.A.S. Foundation, Lagos. Both artists are given exhibitions at the ART X Lagos fair and supported by grants of $10,000 for their exhibition.
The ART X Prize is sponsored by Access Corporation, the parent company of Access Bank.