Logan Center for the Arts: The Ties that Bind 

Chicago, IL

Fall 2017 – Fall 2019


Incubator Grant

The Ties that Bind: Waves of Pan-Africanism in Contemporary Art and Society is a multiyear research project, public program, and online platform that explores the history of Pan-Africanism and its articulation in the art and culture of the contemporary African diaspora. The Ties that Bind creates space for critical discourse and art production, and engages a multigenerational and international group of artists, scholars, and curators across three public forums or “congresses” taking place in Chicago. The first convening took place in October 2017, with subsequent public events taking place through 2019. These gatherings address three distinct yet interrelated themes: Returns considers the idea of returning to the place, history, and culture of Africa as a key driving force in the development of Pan-African thought and aesthetics. Nonalignment takes into account resistance towards the reductive tendencies of Pan-Africanism and the shifting of focus towards local interconnectivity and cultural hybridity. Horizons explores contemporary trends and connections across the African diaspora, asking questions about forms of solidarity that exist today and how they are articulated in the practices and networks of artists.

The Ties that Bind: Waves of Pan-Africanism in Contemporary Art and Society is presented by Logan Center Exhibitions and curated by Yesomi Umolu, Exhibitions Curator.

For more information, please visit the project website.

Image: Marilyn Nance, USA Contingent FESTAC ’77 Closing Ceremony. Image courtesy the artist.