The Trans-African Project

Invisible Borders is currently taking part in a large scale exhibition put together by Museum of Modern Arts in Louisiana from June 25 - October 25, 2015.

The exhibition is the third in a series starting in 2012 with an exhibition on Nordic identity entitled NEW NORDIC followed in 2014 by Arab Contemporary focusing on the Arab world. In this third exhibition the focus turns to Sub-Saharan Africa, which despite significant differences still share a number of characteristics and challenges. The exhibition intends to elucidate and differentiate more subtly among the shared features as well as the differences. The aim is to investigate the challenges that face the African continent across national boundaries and propose an alternative to the predominant Western narrative by asking: "What can we learn from Africa?"

The Invisible Borders Trans-African Project is a platform that assembles African artists to reflect upon the question of borders and their implications in 21st century Africa. Since 2009, the envisioned utopia has been one of a transAfrican exchange. As a metaphor extracted in part from the TransAfrican Highway, it builds upon the limitations of panAfricanism and the failures of nationalism. It becomes possible as a result to situate the project as Trans - African by proposing the generative power of movement as an antithesis to the limitation of borders, both imagined and real. Insofar as nationalism builds on the cartographic project of colonialism, the project has sought to propose nonlinearity and fluidity – a state of perpetual flux – as a condition of transAfricanism.

The Trans-African Road Trip annually brings together artists from different countries in Africa to make road trips across borders while creating works inspired by their experiences.

The works presented are specific bodies of works – photography, video and writings – realised by 14 artists who were part of the road trips, workshops and site-specific interventions during a 5-year period.

The works are displayed as an installation across LCD screens arranged as a triptych.

Texts from Emmanuel Iduma play the role of a mediator, creating reflective intermissions but also pointers for the audience. There are also videos whose sound become the audio component of the entire installation. The images, videos and texts have been carefully arranged and synchronised across the three screens such that they relate and reference each other while retaining the specificity of each artist’s intentions. In this sense, this exhibition is not a group show, but a collective one, the difference being that the focus is on presenting our endeavour as the outcome of impulses which took shape within a collaborative frame and context.

Artists whose works make up the Invisible Borders presentation are:

Ala Kheir, Amaize Ojeikere, Charles Okereke , Emeka Okereke, Emmanuel Iduma, Jide Odukoya, Jumoke Sanwo, Lillian Novo Isioro, Lucy Azubuike, Ray Daniels Okeugo, Teresa Menka, Tom Saater, Uche Okpa-Iroha, Vanessa Peterson.