The Identity of Activism

Online panel discussion with photographer Leroy Cooper, artist Fauziya Johnson, sociologist Dr Adam Elliot-Cooper, Cultural Producer & Development Strategist, Nike Jonah, chaired by Bolanle Tajudeen


6:30pm - 7:30pm


Mon 09 August 2021



Whose voices get heard? Whose lenses are we presented with?

The panel will explore themes from Baff Akoto's UP:RISE artwork, a groundbreaking Augmented Reality artwork that will be shown nationwide from 6th August. The artwork marks 10 years since the "UK Riots" of 2011, described by the artist as "the first uprisings of the digital era".

They'll also discuss the impact of the 2011 uprising on the current protests and moments of civil unrest, as well as drawing links back to a tradition of civil unrest in the UK. Asking questions of whose voices are being heard, which voices are legitimized and why?

UP:RISE Public Artwork

UP:RISE is a groundbreaking nationwide Augmented Reality Public artwork from artist Baff Akoto, exploring the pathology, history and underlying drivers of English civil unrest in the digital age.

Marking the 10th anniversary of the August 2011 “UK riots”, UP:RISE exhibits from August 6th 2021 via QR codes located nationwide in communities where incidents of unrest were recorded in the summer of 2011. Akoto’s UP:RISE exhibition is accompanied by community workshops and a Conversation Series bringing together artists and thought leaders with community and youth voices to explore the inherent themes of the work, delving into how digital networks connect marginalised people and shape real-world mass dissent.

Baff’s UP:RISE continues (and is a 21st century update on) the artistic tradition of works which memorialise and commemorate previously denigrated sociopolitical and historical moments - including Picasso (Guernica), Accra Shepp (Occupy Portraits), Kara Walker (Gone, Battle of Atlanta), Mark Wallinger (State Britain), John Akomfrah (Riot, Handsworth Songs), Jeremy Deller (Orgreave) and Steve McQueen (Small Axe)

UP:RISE Artwork is accompanied by UP:RISE In Conversation a series of talks interrogating different aspects of the work and UP:RISE Creators a programme of community-based workshops.

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