Bildmuseet at Umeå University in Sweden, which first showed John Akomfrah's Vertigo Sea following its premiere at the Venice Biennale in 2015, showcases the installation's equally ambitious sequel Purple in a new exhibtion from 13 April until 16 September 2018.
While Vertigo Sea tackles issues relating to the sea and its role in the history of slavery, migration and conflict, Purple addresses man's broader relationship to nature and to the planet. At a time when greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are at historically high levels and glaciers are melting, Purple poses the question of human responsibility.
In this epic film work, John Akomfrah combines archival material with newly staged footage and a hypnotic sound score. The new film sequences were recorded in regions with particularly climate-sensitive ecosystems, such as Greenland, Alaska and the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia and at various sites around the UK. Combined with images and film clips from the 1940s to the present day, they form a multi-layered montage of politics, history, and fiction.Parallel themes run through the hour-long work.
Purple is a Smoking Dogs Films production, commissioned by Barbican, London; Bildmuseet, Umeå; the TBA21-Academy, Vienna; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, and the Museu Coleção Berardo, Lisbon.
Please click here for more information on the presentation of Purple at Bildmuseet.
Image courtesy of Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid.