Decolonising the Arts Curriculum: Personal Narratives

Exhibition at Central St Martins Library

Until 30th September 2019 

Adding to the current display of posters on display at CSM library as part of the wider Decolonising the Arts Curriculum Zine project, this exhibition presents the work of 5 artists and practitioners, all staff, students or alumni of UAL. The artists currently displaying their work are Maria Bendixen, Dr Jo Shah, Tobi Alexandra Falade, Joanna Mamede &  Ana Luiza Rodrigues and Siyan Zhang.

The exhibition, which takes over the numerous displays and glass vitrines through the library brings the selected artists together to explore personal narratives in relation to decolonisation. It has been curated by Rahul Patel, who co-runs the Decolonising the Arts Curriculum Zine project. 

Dr Jo Shah presents a case of 10 personal objects that describe her heritage, inviting audiences to look at the complexities of each object without judgement and take a more nuanced perspective on what being British is.  

Joanna Madede and Ana Luiza Rodrigues bring a version of their work ‘Face in the Hole’, which has been publicly exhibited on a number of occasions including at the Tate exchange. Joanna, who has both Brazilian and British heritage uses the occasion of the election of Jair Bolsonaro to challenge audience’s ability and willingness to associate themselves with hateful and divisive speech. 

Maria Bendixen exhibits a number of her own ceramic pieces that explore racism and bias, through surface text that describe personal experiences of racism.  

Tobi Alexandra Falade has curated a display of family photographs and artefacts that describe her personal histories that began in Nigeria and continued here in England.  

Through the photographic work of Siyan Zhang we can experience flavours  of downtown Beijing and its rapidly disappearing spaces that are being threatened by face-paced developments. 

You can listen to a podcast about this exhibition featuring interviews with the featured artists here:

Decolonising the Arts Curriculum is an ongoing multi-form, multi-site initiative led by Rahul Patel. For more information please visit:

Previous exhibitions in this series: 

July 2019: Language Centre responds to Decolonising the Arts Curriculum 

Future events: 

October 2019: Publication of Decolonising the Arts Curriculum: Perspectives on Higher Education Zine 2  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.