An Ode to Afrosurrealism

A photographic art display exploring contemporary relationships with spiritualism, reality and surrealism, through a Black British lens.

Drawing from personal experience, mythology and symbolism, artists Hamed Maiye and Adama Jalloh explore new ways to imagine spiritual identity through photography.

Afrosurrealism, first coined in 1974 by the poet Amiri Baraka, is a visual and literary movement that uses the surreal and otherworldly to visualise the present.

In this photo series we pay homage to Afrosurrealism, a visual and literary movement which considers what lies beyond the visible and material world, exploring the reality of the present and creating art that expresses the “otherworldly”.

We use Afrosurrealism as a visual framework, drawing on mythology and symbolism, as well as our personal experiences as artists, to present new ways to imagine spiritual identity.
Hamed Maiye

The exhibition highlights in particular the spiritual bond between twins and the meaning of the number 2 – images of twins are used throughout the series to show the mirroring of reality and surrealism, symbolising union and division.

An Ode to Afrosurrealism also aims to inspire younger artists to consider different ways of creating art by looking outside the usual canon of spiritual iconography.

With special thanks to:

Kashmir Wickham, Indea Lewis, Tamibe Bourdanne, Tunde Awoyemi, Ysaana Paul, N’aami-Li Paul, Georgia Bowen-Evans, Chelsea Bowen-Evans, Jahmaine Johnson, Jordon Johnson, Bianca Saunders, Nadine Mos, Jazz Grant, Jawara Alleyne & The Swiss Church in London.