• Audio
  • MACBA, Barcelona
  • 2011

The Secret King in the Empire of Thinking

The post-lens based essay-film In the Year of the Quiet Sun, also the title of the exhibition, explores the role of the Ghana Philatelic Agency. This mysterious Wall Street company created the Pan-Africanist Pop aesthetic associated with the independent state of Ghana from 1957 until the overthrow of its first President, Kwame Nkrumah, in 1966. Connecting postal politics depicting antagonistic policies of newly independent states to the formation of the Non-Aligned Movement within the unstable context of the global Cold War, the title also points to the decrease in solar surface temperature that occurs every eleven years.

Occupying two rooms of Casco Office for Art, Design and Theory’s new space, the installation Statecraft envisions the short century of decolonization as a political calendar assembled from the medium of the postage stamp. These masscult artifacts were issued to commemorate the independence of Africa’s new nation-states, from Liberia in 1847 to South Sudan in 2011. Here they are integrated into an elaborate display system that functions indexically as an Incomplete Timeline of Independence Stamps, determined by Digital Auction. This formation reveals the iconography of independence as a combination of Pan-Africanist Pop Art, New Elizabethan cult of personality, and Social Realist portraiture.

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Otolith Group in Conversation


Audio Recording 2



Casco Haus der Kulturen der Welt Artsonje Center Mondriaan Fund

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