"They Won't Budge: Africans in Europe" Exhibition

The Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts

This event has ended.

Curated by Awam Amkpa, Annalisa Butticci and Madala Hilaire - NYU Africana Studies Department

Creative Consultant - Deb Willis

Their stories are numerous, some similar and others flavored by particular struggles in specific sites of discontent. Overall, their attitudes are of stubborn resilience, hope, and survival in environments desperate for their labor but resentful of their presence. With over 100 photographs and videos from Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Germany, Holland, Czech and Britain, the exhibition, organized by NYU's Africana Studies Department, follows some remarkably resilient immigrants on their uncertain sojourn on makeshift, intermittently powered fishing boats from West Africa, through the rigors of European immigration control, into the interstices of European society. These works of art are created by award winning photographers, photo-journalists, and human rights activists all over Europe including Juan Medina (Spain), Alfredo Muňoz de Oliveira (Portugal), Francesco Cocco, Angelo Aprile, Elisa Cozzarini, Marco Ambrosi, Matteo Danesin, Aldo Sodoma and Stefano Renna (Italy). Also included are selected photos courtesy of agency Fotogramma (Milan) and AGNfoto (Naples).

The title "They Won't Budge" is derived from Salif Keita's song "We Won't Budge" and adopted by Manthia Diawara as the title of his celebrated book. The exhibition is divided into 6 themes: Passages, Work, Defiance, Religion, Spaces, and Portraits. The exhibition also consists of installations of African working migrants and artists, antiracist campaigns and protest songs that illustrate the advocacies of Africans and Civic organizations in Europe.


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