IBar News

Slavery, Emancipation and Art Workshop – Thursday 20th April 2017

Location: Media Innovation Studio, 4th floor the Media Factory, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, PR1 2HE – 10:00 – 17:00

‘The artist must take sides. He must elect to fight for freedom or slavery. I have made my choice. I had no alternative.’ (Paul Robeson)


We are delighted to invite you to a workshop on Thursday 20th April 2017 examining some of the different ways that slavery and its legacies have figured within the art world.


Registration is free and lunch and refreshments will be provided.


Click here to book your FREE place


Art has a long and tangled history in relation to slavery, abolition, emancipation and cultural resistance. Both pro and anti slavery campaigners used art to make public political statements. Slave-based wealth was used to purchase and preserve cultural treasures – some of which can be found in our national and regional galleries and museums today. The legacies of both slavery and empire include complex and often unequal cultural entanglements. Artists and art institutions have been both complicit in and also resistant to slavery and its legacies. For the Black Arts Movement issues of slavery, colonialism, race and racism were key and they used art practice to challenge, subvert and deconstruct ideas of ‘blackness’. This workshop will explore issues of slavery, resistance, emancipation, identity, race and racism, institutions and collections, curatorial voice and authority. Speakers include established and emerging artists, curators and academics and the emphasis of the day will be on debate and discussion. Please join in the conversation!


Programme – 10:00 – 17:00

10:00-10:30 Registration, tea and coffee

10:30-10:45 Introduction

10:45-11:45 Lubaina Himid – Art and archive session (UCLAN/IBAR)

11:45-12:00 Break

12:00-13:00 Panel 1 Artists in Conversation

Wendy Asquith (University of Nottingham), Hannah Durkin (University of Newcastle), Kimathi Donkor, and Joy Gregory

13:00-14:00 Lunch

14:00-15:00 Panel 2 Curators in Conversation

Alan Rice (IBAR / UCLAN) and Jean-Francois Manicom (International Slavery Museum).

15:00-16:00 Sarah Thomas, Birkbeck – Slave-owners and art collecting (Birkbeck)

16:00-16:15 Break

16:15-17:00 Open session to discuss past, present and future projects


This event is funded by the British Academy and is a partnership between the Antislavery Usable Past project (University of Nottingham) and the Institute for Black Atlantic Research (University of Central Lancashire). Click here for more information