In conversation: Sonia Boyce and Osei Bonsu
Join artist Sonia Boyce and Osei Bonsu, Curator of International Art at Tate for a conversation exploring the themes in Boyce’s exhibition In the Castle of My Skin. The metaphor of skin as a covering, a surface, a barrier, a marker of identity and a connector between internal and external worlds will be a starting point for a rich discussion.
Sonia Boyce MBE is a British Afro-Caribbean artist who lives and works in London. She studied at Stourbridge College, West Midlands. Boyce’s early work addressed issues of race and gender in the media and in day-to-day life. She expressed these themes through large pastel drawings and photographic collages.
Her work has since shifted materially and conceptually by incorporating a variety of media such as photographs, collages, films, prints, drawings, installation and sound. Her recent work collaboratively brings the audience into sharper focus as an integral part of the artwork, between artist, vocalists and audience, demonstrating how cultural differences might be articulated, mediated and enjoyed. Boyce’s significant exhibitions include Five Black Women, African Centre, London (1983); Sonia Boyce: For you, only you, Magdalen College, Oxford and subsequent UK venues (2007 – 2008); and All the World’s Futures, 56th Venice Biennale, Arsenale and Giardini (2015).
She is represented in the permanent collections of Arts Council England and Tate Modern, London. In 2007, Boyce was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to the arts. She is currently Professor of Fine Arts at Middlesex University, London and Professor of Black Art and Design at University of the Arts London.
Osei Bonsu is a British-Ghanaian curator, critic and art historian based in London and Paris. His activities encompass exhibition programming, publishing and cultural strategy in the field of visual arts. He has developed projects focused on transnational histories of art, collaborating with museums, galleries and private collections internationally.
In 2017, he curated the 10th edition of Satellites, an exhibition co-commissioned by Jeu de Paume and CAPC: Centre for Contemporary Art, Bordeaux. He has also worked on the development of a number of projects focusing on African art, including ‘Pangaea II: New Art from Africa and Latin America’ (Saatchi Gallery, 2015) and 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair (2013-14). He holds a Masters in History of Art from University College London, where he earned a distinction for his dissertation on Surrealism and African sculpture. Bonsu is a contributing editor at Frieze magazine. In September 2019, he was appointed Curator, International Art at Tate Modern.