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EMPIRE LINES uncovers the unexpected, often two-way, flows of empires through art. Interdisciplinary thinkers use individual artworks as artefacts of imperial exchange, revealing... more

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Avi-Alarm, Hanna Tuulikki (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Invasion Ecology)

Artist Hanna Tuulikki connects plantation landscapes in Finland, Scotland, and across the South West of England, making kin across species... more

11 Jul 2024 · 17 minutes
The Time is Always Now, Ekow Eshun (2024) (EMPIRE LINES x National Portrait Gallery, The Box)

Curator Ekow Eshun reframes the Black figure in historic and contemporary art, surveying its presences, absences, and representations in Western/European... more

27 Jun 2024 · 17 minutes
Taboo Durag, Paul Maheke (2021) (EMPIRE LINES x MOSTYN, Glasgow International)

Contemporary and performance artist Paul Maheke moves between France, Congo, and Canada, exploring the ‘archive of their body’ through drawing... more

13 Jun 2024 · 16 minutes
Ingrid Pollard: Carbon Slowly Turning (2022) (EMPIRE LINES x Invasion Ecology)

In this special episode, EMPIRE LINES returns to Ingrid Pollard’s 2022 exhibition, Carbon Slowly Turning, the first major survey of... more

30 May 2024 · 14 minutes
Twist, LR Vandy (2024) (EMPIRE LINES x October Gallery, Chatham Ropery)

Artist LR (Lisa) Vandy shows EMPIRE LINES the ropes in a studio visit to Chatham’s Royal Navy Dockyard in Kent,... more

16 May 2024 · 30 minutes
Melted into the Sun, Saodat Ismailova (2024) (EMPIRE LINES x Fondazione In Between Art Film, Venice Biennale)

Filmmaker Saodat Ismailova traces stories of spirituality, dissent, and environmental extraction around the Aral Sea from post-Soviet Uzbekistan and Central... more

02 May 2024 · 15 minutes
Decolonised Structures (Queen Victoria), Yinka Shonibare CBE RA (2022-2023) (EMPIRE LINES x The Serpentine Galleries, Venice Biennale)

Artist Yinka Shonibare CBE RA, and Hans Ulrich Obrist and Tamsin Hong of the Serpentine Galleries, coat London’s historic statues... more

18 Apr 2024 · 25 minutes
Dreams Have No Titles, Zineb Sedira (2022-Now) (EMPIRE LINES x Whitechapel Gallery, Goodman Gallery, Venice Biennale)

Artist Zineb Sedira records cultural and postcolonial connections between Algeria, France, Italy, and the UK from the 1960s, featuring films,... more

04 Apr 2024 · 17 minutes
Giolo’s Lament, Pio Abad (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Ashmolean Museum)

Artist and archivist Pio Abad draws out lines between Oxford, the Americas, and the Philippines, making personal connections with historic... more

28 Mar 2024 · 18 minutes
Camera Obscura, Pia Arke (1990) (EMPIRE LINES x John Hansard Gallery, KW Institute for Contemporary Art)

Curators Ros Carter and Sofie Krogh Christensen chart Pia Arke’s photo-activism across the Arctic region, from a pinhole view to... more

21 Mar 2024 · 19 minutes
Medium and Memory, Griselda Pollock (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x HackelBury Fine Art)

Art historian and Professor Griselda Pollock traces the memories of contemporary artist women like Sutapa Biswas, one of her students... more

14 Mar 2024 · 21 minutes
Lost Threads, Lubaina Himid (2021, 2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Holburne Museum, British Textile Biennale)

Artist and curator Lubaina Himid unravels entangled histories of transatlantic slavery and textile production, across continents, and Britain’s museum collections,... more

07 Mar 2024 · 15 minutes
The Black Atlantic, Paul Gilroy (1993-Now) (EMPIRE LINES Live, with Radical Ecology)

Decolonial thinker Professor Paul Gilroy joins EMPIRE LINES live in Plymouth, to chart thirty years since the publication of The... more

29 Feb 2024 · 48 minutes
Noko Y3 Dzen (There’s Something in the World), Serge Attukwei Clottey (2018-Now) (EMPIRE LINES Live at the Eden Project, Cornwall)

Artist Serge Attukwei Clottey joins EMPIRE LINES live at the Eden Project in Cornwall, to discuss Afrogallonism, uplifting communities with... more

22 Feb 2024 · 1 hour,
Habitat, Taloi Havini (2017) (EMPIRE LINES x Artes Mundi 10, National Museum of Wales, Chapter, MOSTYN)

Artist - and winner of Artes Mundi 10 - Taloi Havini mines connections between extractive industries in the Pacific Islands,... more

08 Feb 2024 · 18 minutes
Freud: El Mago de los Sueños (The Wizard of Dreams), Vidas Ilustres Comic Book (1963)

Jamie Ruers, Mariano Ben Plotkin, and Mariano Ruperthuz Honorato, from the Freud Museum in London, reinterpret psychoanalysis through 20th century... more

01 Feb 2024 · 17 minutes
The Madras College of Arts and Crafts, India (1850-Now) (EMPIRE LINES x The Noble Sage, Brunei Gallery)

Jana Manuelpillai revisits the Madras College of Arts and Crafts, the first British colonial art school set up in India, through... more

25 Jan 2024 · 13 minutes
Queer Feet, Osman Yousefzada (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Charleston)

Interdisciplinary artist Osman Yousefzada crafts stories of working-class migration experiences, unwrapping the influence of his mother and many other textile... more

18 Jan 2024 · 13 minutes
Learning from Artemisia, Uriel Orlow and Orchestre Jeunes Étoiles des Astres (2019-2020) (EMPIRE LINES x Eden Project)

Curators Hannah Hooks and Misha Curson connect global environments and food practices, from guerrilla gardeners in the Democratic Republic of... more

11 Jan 2024 · 16 minutes
White Zombie, Victor Halperin (1932) (EMPIRE LINES x Visions of Haiti, Barbican Cinema)

Curator Matthew Barrington marks 220 years since the Haitian Revolution, the only successful slave uprising, unreeling how resistance continues with... more

05 Jan 2024 · 17 minutes
The Black Triangle, Armet Francis (1969) (EMPIRE LINES x Autograph)

Photographer Armet Francis documents African diasporic cultures across ‘The Black Triangle’, and captures the co-founding of the Association of Black... more

28 Dec 2023 · 15 minutes
Whites Can Dance Too, Kalaf Epalanga, translated by Daniel Hahn (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Kizomba Design Museum, Africa Writes 2023)

Writer and musician Kalaf Epalanga moves between Angola, Portugal, and Brazil, sounding out colonial histories and contemporary migrant experiences through... more

21 Dec 2023 · 15 minutes
Where Worlds Meet, Maha Ahmed (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Leighton House)

Contemporary artist Maha Ahmed reconnects Asian art forms along the Silk Road, migrating between traditional Mughal and Persian miniature paintings,... more

14 Dec 2023 · 15 minutes
Arcadia, John Akomfrah (2023) (EMPIRE LINES at 100 x The Box, Sharjah Biennial 15)

For EMPIRE LINES’ 100th episode, we join artist and filmmaker John Akomfrah to journey the Columbian Exchange, connecting continents from... more

07 Dec 2023 · 13 minutes
Africa Series, Carrie Mae Weems (1993) (EMPIRE LINES x Kunstmuseum Basel)

Curator Alice Wilke transports from Switzerland to sub-Saharan cities in Africa, tracing Carnival traditions across continents, via Carrie Mae Weems’... more

30 Nov 2023 · 13 minutes
Did You Come Here To Find History?, Nusra Latif Qureshi (2009) (EMPIRE LINES x MK Gallery, The Box)

Curator Hammad Nasar expands ideas of miniature painting, moving around South Asia and Western Europe from the 17th century to... more

23 Nov 2023 · 22 minutes
Hélène Amouzou: Voyages (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Autograph)

Photographer Hélène Amouzou, and curator Bindi Vora, capture the in/visibility of refugees and asylum seekers in Europe, moving between 21st... more

16 Nov 2023 · 16 minutes
Against Apartheid, Ashish Ghadiali (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Radical Ecology, KARST)

Curator and filmmaker Ashish Ghadiali connects climate science, contemporary art, and activism, cultivating a radical, cultural ecology in the countryside... more

09 Nov 2023 · 23 minutes
And I Have My Own Business In This Skin, Claudette Johnson (1982) (EMPIRE LINES x The Courtauld Gallery)

Curator Dorothy Price outlines the figures of Claudette Johnson, a founder member of the Black British Art Movement (Blk Art... more

26 Oct 2023 · 19 minutes
Declaration of Independence, Barby Asante (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Art on the Underground)

Contemporary artist Barby Asante moves through the London Transport Museum to Stratford Station, coming together with Black women TfL staff... more

18 Oct 2023 · 14 minutes
Story, Place, Tony Albert (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Sullivan+Strumph, Frieze London)

Artist and curator Tony Albert collects Aboriginalia, colonial kitsch still found in Australia’s second-hand and souvenir shops, to reconstruct historic... more

12 Oct 2023 · 14 minutes
Chorus in Rememory of Flight, Julianknxx (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Barbican)

Curator Eleanor Nairne traces the migrations of contemporary artist Julianknxx, as he travels between European port cities, and back to... more

04 Oct 2023 · 15 minutes
Living in the Wake of the Lust for Sugar, Elsa James (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Museum of London Docklands)

Contemporary artist Elsa James moves through the Museum of London Docklands’ London, Sugar & Slavery gallery - and so, the missing... more

28 Sep 2023 · 15 minutes
Black Atlantic: Power, People, Resistance (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Fitzwilliam Museum)

Curators Jake Subryan Richards and Vicky Avery locate Cambridge within the transatlantic slave trade, connecting global commodities and local consumption,... more

21 Sep 2023 · 26 minutes
UNRWA Dress from Ramallah, Palestine (1930s) (EMPIRE LINES x Kettle’s Yard)

Curator Rachel Dedman unpicks the personal and political histories woven into Palestinian textiles, the role of the ‘embroidered woman’ in... more

14 Sep 2023 · 17 minutes
Home is Not a Place, Johny Pitts and Roger Robinson (2021-Now) (EMPIRE LINES x The Photographers’ Gallery)

Writer and photographer Johny Pitts captures everyday experiences from Black communities around the British coast, bringing together the sights, sounds,... more

07 Sep 2023 · 14 minutes
What Remains at the End of the Earth?, Imani Jacqueline Brown (2022) (EMPIRE LINES x Hayward Gallery)

Multimedia artist and activist Imani Jacqueline Brown maps out the long history of extractivism in southern America, constellating 18th century... more

31 Aug 2023 · 18 minutes
Lagos Soundscapes, Emeka Ogboh (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x South London Gallery, Southbank Centre)

Curator Folakunle Oshun links Peckham in the UK, and Lagos in Nigeria, with water and two centuries of shared colonial... more

24 Aug 2023 · 25 minutes
WAVE: Currents in Japanese Graphic Arts at Japan House London (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x historicity Tokyo)

In this bonus episode, brought to you with historicity Tokyo, Japan House London curator Hiro Sugiyama, and contemporary artists Tsuzuki... more

18 Aug 2023 · 10 minutes
Photographs of the Polar Silk Road, Gregor Sailer (2017-2021) (EMPIRE LINES x Natural History Museum)

Photographer Gregor Sailer exposes the neo-imperial scramble for resources in the Arctic Circle and the Polar Silk Road, with stills... more

17 Aug 2023 · 11 minutes
Exile is a Hard Job, Nil Yalter (1974-Now) (EMPIRE LINES x Ab-Anbar Gallery)

Artist Nil Yalter, a pioneer in 20th century video and multimedia installations, explores the often challenging experience of being an... more

10 Aug 2023 · 16 minutes
A History of a City In a Box, Ndidi Dike (2019) (EMPIRE LINES x Tate Modern)

Curators Osei Bonsu, Jess Baxter, and Genevieve Barton cross the diverse landscapes, borders, and generations of contemporary African photography, exposing... more

03 Aug 2023 · 18 minutes
From Here I Saw What Happened and I Cried, Carrie Mae Weems (1995–1996) (EMPIRE LINES x Barbican)

Curator Florence Ostende visualises how violence against African Americans has been perpetuated throughout history, and challenged with contemporary art, by... more

26 Jul 2023 · 15 minutes
The Casablanca Art School (1962-1987) (EMPIRE LINES x Tate St Ives)

Curator Morad Montazami assembles the revolutionary artist-professors and students of the Casablanca Art School who constructed the post-colonial state of... more

20 Jul 2023 · 19 minutes
Oneness, Shahrzad Ghaffari (2022) (EMPIRE LINES x Leighton House)

Artist Shahrzad Ghaffari replies to orientalism in the Arts & Crafts Movement, William De Morgan’s Arab Hall, and the new... more

13 Jul 2023 · 13 minutes
Silent Protests, Tewa Barnosa (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Shubbak Festival, The Africa Centre)

Curator Najlaa El-Ageli explores how Colonel Muammar Gaddafi colonised Libya’s character and identity from the 1960s to its post-Arab Spring... more

06 Jul 2023 · 10 minutes
Old Vineyard with Peasant Woman, Vincent van Gogh (1890) (EMPIRE LINES x Van Gogh Museum)

Nienke Bakker, curator at the Van Gogh Museum, unpacks how the artist encountered Japan in Europe, and how woodblock prints... more

28 Jun 2023 · 15 minutes
Barbershop, Hurvin Anderson (2006-2023) (EMPIRE LINES x The Hepworth Wakefield)

Curator Isabella Maidment steps into Hurvin Anderson’s studio and barbershop, a point of cultural connection between Birmingham and the Caribbean,... more

22 Jun 2023 · 11 minutes
Dal Puri Diaspora, Richard Fung (2012) (EMPIRE LINES x Museum of London Docklands)

Curators Shereen Lafhaj and Makiya Davis-Bramble unwrap the underrepresented history of Indian indenture in the British Caribbean in the 19th... more

15 Jun 2023 · 23 minutes
Too Loud a Dust, Musquiqui Chihying (2023) (EMPIRE LINES x Tabula Rasa Gallery)

Artist Musquiqui Chihying brushes up the history of displaying sick and strong Asian bodies, from the Formosa Hamlet or human... more

08 Jun 2023 · 14 minutes
Barbershop, Hurvin Anderson (2006-2023) (EMPIRE LINES x The Hepworth Wakefield)

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Curator Isabella Maidment steps into Hurvin Anderson’s studio and barbershop, a point of cultural connection between Birmingham and the Caribbean, reconstructed at... more