On Saturday 16th April 2016, one of the major museums in Europe based in the Netherlands, Van Abbe Museum, Eindhoven, hosted the opening of new exhibtion “The 1980’s: Today’s Beginning?”. The exhibtion explores the decade from the perspectives of six countires in Europe through music, television, art and archival and graphic material. The six countries featured in the exhibition responding to the theme are: Netherlands (Talking Back: Counter Culture in the Netherlands), Great Britain (Thinking Back: A Montage of Black Art in Britain), Yugoslavia (NSK: From Kaptial to Captial: An Event in the Final Decade of Yugoslavia), Spain (Video-intervention in the Spainish Transition), Turkey (How Did We Get Here?: Turkey in the 1980’s) and Madrid (Archivo Queer: Screwing the System, Madrid 1989-1995).
Great Britain’s Thinking Back: A Montage of Black Art in Britain response to the 1980’s, rewinds back to conversations and thoughts during the 1980’s between black film makers, artists, organisations and creatives on politics in Britain’s colonial legacy and using culture as a space and platform to form expressions, identities and to create ideas.
Guests artists and curators who attended the opening of the exhibtion include Sonia Boyce, Keith Piper, Lubaina Hamid, Marlene Smith, Claudette Johnson Ingrid Pollard, Melanie Keen (Director of INIVA) and June Givanni
In addition to above, seminal works of Eddie Chambers, Maud Saulter, Gavin Jantes, Isaac Julien, John Akomfrah and individual and collective artists work of that time are exhibited in the space. The archival selections in the exhibition are from the Stuart Hall Library, INIVA; Making Histories Visible Archive and the June Givanni Pan African Cinema Archive.
The June Givanni Pan African Cinema Archive selection included films from Imruh Bakari (Third Eye: An Introduction to Black Cinema with photographs), Mike Dibb (CLR James and Stuart Hall in Conservation), and Amani Naphtali (Bohemian Noir). A small selection of framed film and festival posters; materials about Third Eye Film Festival (complimented with a selection of photographs) and the Edinburgh Third Cinema Conference were also included from the archive as well as archival material on the Association of Black Workshops, Black Film Review articles.
The physical design of Van Abbe’s D.I.Y. Archive was of particular interest to JGPACA which is seeking to develop an accessible archival model.
The exhibition is on until 25th 2016. Shanice Martin April 2016