The Showroom

theVOV Virtual Evening Event

Thursday 24 June, 6–8pm


An Evening of Collective Intimacy with The Showroom
Thursday 24 June, 6–8pm

Join us for special Evening Event activating of our exhibition Collective Intimacy – Reviving a Live Programme on theVOV!

For theVOV Season One, the Showroom revives their 2019 Collective Intimacy live programme in collaboration with Prada and The Vinyl Factory. The exhibition takes us on a journey in which multiple and trans-located narratives of the current Black experience and their futuristic imaginaries are the point of departure for a cosmopolitan view of the world.


Virtual Programme

6pm: Welcome Tour by Curators Elvira Dyangani Ose & Katherine Finerty

6:15pm: Temenos video by Producer Nephertiti Oboshie Schandorf and spoken word by Violinist Blaize Henry

6:30pm: In Praise of Still Boys video and discussion with Poet Julianknxx

6:45pm: POSTSCRIPT Reflects: On Cultural Self-Reclamation and the Female Gaze through film with Founder Chinasa Chukwu in conversation with Filmmaker Sis Gurdal and Co-Founder & Editorial Director Elvira Vedelago

7:30pm: Mother Tongue, Mother Master video and sound set Can You Move Towards Yourself Without Flinching? by Artist Phoebe Collings-James

8pm: Cheers & Good Night

Virtual Exhibition on theVOV

Collective Intimacy 2019 Website


theVOV is an initiative by Outset Contemporary Art Fund and Visualogical

Virtual galleries developed by Erel Herzog

Season One of theVOV is hosted on Vortic Art


theVOV invites you to donate and support public art institutions, their curators and artists and ensure they can keep being creative, challenging, entertaining, and vibrant. theVOV pools all donations it receives and distributes them to all participating institutions.

All donations to theVOV are treated as a restricted fund, managed and distributed to participating institutions by Outset Contemporary Art Fund (Registered Charity No. 1101476).

6:15pm: Temenos video by Producer Nephertiti Oboshie Schandorf and spoken word by Violinist Blaize Henry


Nephertiti Oboshie Schandorf invited violinist Blaize Henry to respond to the prompt Temenos. This improvised performance is a continuation of the themes of alchemy and Jungian thought instigated in Nigredo, the sister piece and originator of Sospiro (both 2019) and Lumen (2021) newly commissioned for theVOV. Over the course of the series, Henry has been invited to interpret and develop responses and motifs. In this piece Henry references temenos, a sacred space along with the ambient sounds of the external world to construct this meditative work.

A screening of Temenos will be followed with spoken word by Blaize Henry

Born to Afro-Guyanese parents in South East London, Blaize Henry began playing the violin at the age of seven and now enjoys a varied career as an orchestral musician, chamber music player and teacher, having toured the UK and Europe with numerous ensembles. He is a regular player with Chineke!, Europe’s first orchestra of Black and ethnically diverse musicians, in addition to regular commitments as a session musician and recording artist, having recently worked with performers such as Annie Lennox, NAO, Sampha, Raleigh Ritchie and more. A committed performer of new music. As an artist and composer, Blaize enjoys blending a broad range of musical genres and mediums to create complex, luscious soundscapes. His most recent performance art pieces make use of spoken word, improvisation, jazz harmony and digital manipulation to explore themes such as race, gender, sexuality and desire in an increasingly divided world.

6:30pm: In Praise of Still Boys video and discussion with Poet Julianknxx


In Praise Of Still Boys is a reexamination of the artist’s childhood growing up in Sierra Leone through the lives and experiences of young boys living and growing next to the blue waters of the Atlantic ocean. The piece draws inspiration both from Barry Jenkins’ 2016 adaptation of Tarell Alvin McCraney’s unpublished semi-autobiographical play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue and Richard Pryor's 1982 visit to Kenya. From these points of reference Julianknoxx retells the story of his childhood from Freetown, Sierra Leone to London with a blue tint, reflecting on a relationship with the place of his birth cut short by political upheaval and nostalgia for the waters he was forced to leave, the same waters that claimed the lives of more than a million enslaved Africans as they were transported to the Americas hundred of years earlier. The visual poem also transports us back through the poet’s past with the inclusion of Krio, an English-based creole spoken mainly in Sierra Leone. With In Praise Of Still Boys he imagines a space in which young Sierra Leoneans can try to write their own stories into global history. Expressing local worldviews, the film meditates on change, fate, and everyday magic. Visually anchored by the image of the Atlantic Ocean, the poem explores the relationship between Freetown, the Middle Passage, and the African diaspora.

A screening of In Praise Of Still Boys will be followed by a discussion with Julianknxx and curator Katherine Finerty, followed by a poem.

Julianknxx is an interdisciplinary poet, visual artist and filmmaker whose practice crosses the boundaries of the written word, music, visual art and installation. Through his practice, Julianknxx explores themes of inheritance, loss, and belonging, and their effects on personal and interpersonal narratives. With his critical engagement with art history and philosophy, Julianknxx uses his personal history as a prism through which to deconstruct dominant perspectives on African art, ideas, history and culture. Rich with symbolism and complex layering his work conveys our continuing and necessary task of defining and redefining ourselves through the simultaneous rejection of extrinsic labels and repositioning of ourselves within new collective narratives.

6:45pm: POSTSCRIPT Reflects: On Cultural Self-Reclamation and the Female Gaze through film with Founder Chinasa Chukwu in conversation with Filmmaker Sis Gurdal and Co-Founder & Editorial Director Elvira Vedelago


POSTSCRIPT Reflects: On Cultural Self-Reclamation and the Female Gaze through film with founder Chinasa Chukwu in conversation with filmmaker Sis Gurdal and Co-founder and editorial director Elvira Vedelago.

Continuing and expanding on the conversation from POSTSCRIPT’s english rose editorial addressing presentations of womanhood and understandings of femininity, this programme will include a screening of the films english rose and Postcards from the Orient. Ultimately the event brings together female artists, creative directors and filmmakers whose work explores and deconstructs stereotypical and non-contextual tropes of femininity, identity and cultural influences on both.

POSTSCRIPT is a cultural anthology exploring critical thought from contemporary women. Launched in 2018, we release new issues bi-annually. They are available through our website as well as niche outlets such as Good News Soho, The Photographer’s Gallery and The Serpentine Gallery. Bringing together the multiplicity of perspectives of socially engaged and critical thinking women, we aim to produce inspiring and informative content reframing women of culture in contemporary conversations. Featuring creatives and academics from varied backgrounds, we are interested in merging well researched intellectual and analytical writing with reflective, evocative artistic expressions centred on a single theme per issue.

7:30pm: Mother Tongue, Mother Master video and audio-visual session Walk With Me by Artist Phoebe Collings-James


Moving beyond a binary, and into poetics or fission for subversion, the 16mm video work Mother Tongue, Mother Master exposes the erotics of shame and the axis it bares within the body. The voice is bound by constraints put onto the body and its histories, different modes for a voice reach for the possibility of a subjecthood, of agency, resistance in slippery blackness, from the starting point of born objecthood, commodity.

Following this screening is a never-before experienced sound work through walking and listening called Can You Move Towards Yourself Without Flinching? For this rare solo audio release, Phoebe lays out, overlaps, and tangles a curious and often contradictory selection of material over a bed of slowly tumbling electronics. It’s like picking up someone's phone and briefly eavesdropping on their photos, diary notes, recordings, and what they've been watching or listening to, rendering an aural tapestry with a bracing question. Phoebe's placement and arrangement of audio is masterful in its sleight of hand, inviting numerous interpretations, without losing its ability to beguile.


In a diary entry for 2019 I found this question which I struggle to answer. I creep toward it, in a wish to catch a glimpse of myself - without hesitation. If I do catch it, to find an unbearable balm, a suckling connection of love without dread - what would I hear?

I invited friends to answer the question with their own sounds. They did so in myriad ways, all of which were woven into the piece. For my production i work in a collaging style, using sound libraries, ad hoc recordings from my daily journeys, alongside live recording with musicians and poets.

When sharing the track this week, I encouraged it to be listened to while laying down, comfortable. Ideally on good speakers or headphones. Allowing the scene to unfold into the space like an elaborate, sonic pop-up book. Undulating, lethargically within scenes of emotion and tender histories.

Phoebe Collings-James’ work often eludes linear retellings of stories. Instead, her works function as “emotional detritus”: they speak of knowledges of feelings, the debris of violence, language and desire which are inherent to living and surviving within hostile environments. Recent works have been dealing with the object as subject, giving life and tension to ceramic forms. As young nettle, a musical alias, she loves sound that totally envelopes her and is part of B.O.S.S., a QTIBIPOC sound system based in South London.

Drawn to high octane sensual emotional sound, with heavy bass and wild lyrical flows, she creates sound design for original music productions. Including Sounds 4 Survival, an undulating live performance created with SERAFINE1369, which asks the question of what an anti-assimilationist practice can be. As the 2021 Freelands Ceramic Fellow she has an upcoming exhibition at Camden Arts Centre, London, in autumn 2021. Collings-James’s Mudbelly ceramics studio began as a personal practice and research outlet, but has since grown to encompass a shop and a teaching facility offering free ceramics courses for Black people in London, taught by Black ceramicists.

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    Exhibition theVOV – Collective Intimacy: Reviving a Live Programme

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    Event theVOV Virtual Lunchtime Tour