Press play and listen up to the Get Up, Stand Up Now podcast series. A crafted sound odyssey over five episodes, guided by the voices of black creative pioneers featured in the exhibition, Get Up, Stand Up Now.
#2 Dream to Change the World
How do we imagine a better future? How do we imagine equality and how do we get there?
Horace Ové CBE is internationally renowned as one of the leading Black independent filmmakers to emerge in Britain since the post-war period. His 1976 film Pressure is cited in the Guinness Book of Records as the first feature-length film made by a Black British director. Get Up, Stand Up Now curator Zak Ové and Gaylene Gould, British Film Institute (Head of Cinema & Events) are in conversation exploring Pressure, its production and legacy. Artist Sonia Boyce OBE RA discusses her work as an artist and activist starting in the 1980’s with the Black Arts Movement. Spoken word artist Joshua Idehen creatively responds to the themes of activism, change and hope.
Zak Ové shared his father’s passion for film and photography as he assisted him on films sets from a young age and eventually studied Film at St. Martins School of Art, London. Influenced by Trinidad’s steel pan, Zak became an accomplished percussionist; music and art remained the backbone of his work when he moved to New York, as a Music Video Director, shooting classic videos of that time. Extending his work into advertising Zak directed a range of campaigns and worked with Lee Scratch Perry, whose freedom of creativity left its mark on Zak. Ultimately disillusioned with the commercial world Zak returned to Trinidad to document Carnival and its old-time masquerade which subsequently inspired him to create sculptural artworks.
Today Zak’s multi-disciplinary practice focuses on sculpture but still includes film and photography. His work is informed in part through the history and lore carried through the African diaspora to the Caribbean, Britain and beyond, with particular focus on the traditions of masking and masquerade. His artworks explore interplay between old world mythology and what he posits as ‘potential futures’. Using modern materials, and ‘a sound clash of colour’, he blurs the edges between reality and possibility, flesh and spirit.
Sonia Boyce OBE RA
Sonia Boyce OBE RA is a British African-Caribbean artist who gained prominence with Black Women Artists, as part of the Black British cultural renaissance of the 1980s. Her earlier works examined the issues of race and gender in the media and in daily life through large pastel drawings and photographic collages. Her work has since shifted to include a range of media, from prints and film to drawings, sound, installation
Boyce has been working closely with other artists since 1990, which often involves improvisation and spontaneous performative actions on the part of her collaborators. She is represented in the permanent collections of Arts Council England and London’s Tate Modern. She is a Professor in Black Art & Design at University of the Arts London and in 2019, Boyce was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to the arts.
Music by GAIKA, with selected tracks from Trojan Records:
East Of The River Nile - Augustus Pablo
Is it Because I'm Black - Ken Boothe
Hang' em High - Richard Ace
The Liquidator - The Harry J All Stars
Featuring excerpts from Pressure (1976), dir. Horace Ové. Courtesy of the British Film Institute (BFI)
Producer: Mae-Li Evans and Joby Waldman
The series was produced by Reduced Listening and Somerset House
GET UP, STAND UP NOW
GENERATIONS OF BLACK CREATIVE PIONEERS
12 Jun – 15 Sep 2019
A major new exhibition celebrating the past 50 years of Black creativity in Britain and beyond.
Beginning with the radical Black filmmaker Horace Ové and his dynamic circle of Windrush generation creative peers and extending to today’s brilliant young Black talent globally, a group of around 100 interdisciplinary artists will showcase work together for the first time, exploring Black experience and influence, from the post-war era to the present day.