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Sonic Insurrections III

with Evan Ifekoya, André Taylor and Nombuso Mathibela

Sonic Insurrections is a series of public gatherings that present sound and listening as sites of affect, memory, solidarity, pulse, rhythm and spirituality. We delve into sound for its history, situatedness and processes to map out an ‘otherwise’.

For this third iteration, Fred Moten is instructive when he writes:

’If the sensual dominant of a performance is visual (if you’re there, live, at the club), then the aural emerges as that which is given in its fullest possibility by the visual[…] Similarly, if the sensual dominant of the performance is aural (if you’re at home, in your room, with the recording), then the visual emerges as that which is given in its fullest possibility by the aural[…] The visual and the aural are before one another.’

In The Break: The Aesthetic of the Black Radical Tradition

Gathering anew for Sonic Insurrections we commune with Evan Ifekoya, André Taylor and Nombuso Mathibela. This edition immerses itself in the porous relationship between the visual and aural and all possibilities held therein. In the quote above, Fred Moten begins to depict for us the circular relationship between the two; he brings to the fore that it is a relationship that invokes at once the private and public, the static and dynamic, the embodied and the obscure. With his words ringing in our ears, our immersion in the relationship between the aural and the visual orientates us towards an exploration of polyvocal practices that, in taking up sound as a medium, engage with Black sonic pasts, expand its presents and shape its futures. 

Sonic Insurrections III begins with an ongoing sound installation, The Personality of Black Sonics (2022) by Nombuso Mathibela, that can be visited between 14.00 and 17.00 at the Lyssningsrummet. This will be followed by a public gathering from 17.30 in Rutiga golvet, which includes a performative lecture, Frequency, Embodiment and Melanin-o-phonic Space, by Evan Ifekoya and an experimental DJ set by André Taylor. 

Sonic Insurrections is curated and organised by Tawanda Appiah and Mmabatho Thobejane.


14.00 – 17.00 at Lyssningsrummet
(at the Royal Institute of Art, Skeppsholmen), Slupskjulsvägen 30, Stockholm:

Sound installation: The Personality of Black Sonics (2022) by Nombuso Mathibela

17.30 – 20.45 at Rutiga Golvet
(at the Royal Institute of Art, Skeppsholmen), Flaggmansvägen 1, Stockholm:

17.30 – 17.40: Arrivals
17.40 – 17.45: Opening remarks by the Vice-Chancellor, Sara Arrhenius
17.45 – 17.55: Introductions by the curators, Mmabatho Thobejane and Tawanda Appiah
17.55 – 18.45: Performative lecture: Frequency, Embodiment and Melanin-o-phonic Space by Evan Ifekoya
18.45 – 18.55: Intermission
18.55 – 19.20: Conversation and Q&A
19.20 – 20.30: Experimental DJ set by André Taylor
20.45: End


Evan Ifekoya
Ifekoya’s work in community organising, performance, sound, text and video is an extension of their calling as a spiritual practitioner. They view art as a site where resources can be both redistributed and renegotiated, whilst challenging the implicit rules and hierarchies of public and social space. Through archival and sonic investigations, they speculate on blackness in abundance. Strategies of space holding through architectural interventions, ritual, sound and workshops enable them to make a practice of living in order not to turn to despair.

André Taylor
DJ and musicologist who has an affection for warm soulful rhythms and experimental raw sonics. André seeks for sounds that transport you beyond the horizon. He approaches record playing with improvisation and dramaturgy allowing for dynamic exploration and experimentation but still with a vision to keep you locked in a deep groove and sonic space. He is soon debuting his own music which draws upon sonic fiction influenced by the Detroit house/techno scene. Over the last 8 years he has played in various settings in Stockholm, New York and Eindhoven. André graduated from Stockholm University and has studied how electronic dance music and black music negotiate with, and against, Western music criticism.

Nombuso Mathibela
South African cultural worker, writer, educator, sonic practitioner and vinyl selector. She is the cultural political educator for the African Ecofeminist Collective that works on anti-capitalist ecological justice, political art education and histories. Much of her work aims to question and account for the cultural instincts that inform Black sonic aesthetics through dance and performance and situates these forms within a collective class consciousness ethic. Her sonic selections move against prescribed form, borders, across seas, only for dancers, and sometimes a bit obsessed with the seventies but always reflecting the soulful palettes of Black life.

Mmabatho Thobejane
Independent curator, producer and writer currently based in Stockholm, Sweden.

Tawanda Appiah
Zimbabwean independent curator, writer and researcher based in Malmo, Sweden.