Chimurenga Night at State of Independence

Chimurenga: “ a project-based mutable object, a print magazine, a workspace, and platform for editorial and curatorial activities”.

Founded by Ntone Edjabe, Chimurenga has manifested in print since 2002 as a pan African journal of writing, art and politics. A literary journal? A magazine? However it’s packaged, the printed matter – poetry, essays, written stories and other graphic tales (illustrations, photo essays, comics) – inform, question and reshape the way we view our world. Chimurenga’s current print project epitomises this: a quarterly gazette in the form of a new(s)paper, the Chronic.

In Lagos in the 1980s, Ntone studied under Fela Anikulapo Kuti. Felasophy learned at the Kalakuta Republic is integral to the message and modes of Chimurenga. Unchained from (neo-/post-)colonial hang-ups, the critical thinking, and articulate visual and written commentaries published, elevate Chimurenga above any other organisation and publication I’ve come across. (If you know of a comparative sibling please share)

Commendations that come Ntone’s way are deserved, however, to classify Chimurenga as a single-handed enterprise is inaccurate. Vital Chimurenga voices include poet, Sandile Dikeni (as an essential initial educator and catalyst) as well as current cogs, Stacy Hardy (books and oration editor), logistics architect Terry Ayugi, and design lab, Graham Arendse.

At State of Independence on Tuesday evening, I’ll be presenting a range of Chimurenga’s outputs and insights. Displaying their printed matter, (re)playing their visual and sonic projects, entering their library. All being well a selection of London-based Chimurenga people will also contribute.

As Chimurenga say, like Fela said, simply: who no know go know.


Chimurenga Night is part of the State of Independence workshop series
Tuesday 23 July | 6 – 9 pm
State of Independence Pop-up Island | 22-28th July 2013
Unit 17 | Boxpark Shoreditch | 2-4 Bethnal Green Rd | London | E1 6GY

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