Not A Country

Not A Country examines the notion of Africa as a homogeneous geographical entity; instead, it celebrates the continent as a cultural powerhouse. Through an exploration of various attires and textiles, the project interrogates the black body within the British landscape.

The exhibits recognise the significance of fabric as a representation of a community’s shared identity across the entire African continent, from the northern Sahara to the southern Cape. The series of photographs prompt discussions on how colonialism, capitalism, religion, and globalisation have impacted the traditional dresses of indigenous peoples across the continent, encompassing 3000 ethnic groups in 54 countries.

By employing migrant postgraduate students as models, the project scrutinises their material culture, using articles of clothing as intricate tribal symbols that represent history, culture, and the complexities of migration, identity, and difference.