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John Akomfrah: Future History

Mar 5 – May 3 2020

Seattle Art Museum

Simonyi Special Exhibition Galleries

Unusual film productions are John Akomfrah’s medium. In this solo exhibition, three of his works offer provocative visions of the past, present, and future. Tropikos is set in the 16th century and offers a careful look at how Africans and Europeans interacted at this time of extreme change in human history. Vertigo Sea is presented on multiple screens, creating an epic voyage around the world to witness both aquatic grandeur and tragedies at sea. Mixing archival and recent footage, graceful underwater scenes collide with traumatic moments of damage we do to other species and to ourselves. The Last Angel of History was conceived in the early days of the internet, and features a data thief who sets out to find keys to the future by interviewing visionary artists and space explorers.

Support for this exhibition was made possible by
Contributors to the SAM Fund

Image: Film still from Vertigo Sea, 2015, John Akomfrah, three channel HD colour video installation, 7.1 sound, 48 minutes 30 seconds, (AKOM150001), © Smoking Dogs Films; Courtesy Lisson Gallery.

The Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are located on the ancestral land of the Coast Salish people.