Tate Modern appoints curators specialising in African, Middle Eastern and South Asian art

Tate Modern announced today new and recent appointments to its curatorial team which will continue the pioneering research and scholarship already undertaken in the fields of African, Middle Eastern and South Asian modern and contemporary art. These Curators are: Nabila Abdel Nabi, who will focus specifically on art from the Middle East and North Africa; Osei Bonsu, who will focus on further developing the representation of African art in Tate’s collection and programme; and Dr Devika Singh who will specialise in art from South Asia. These posts will further Tate’s commitment to rethinking the history of modern and contemporary art from a less Western-centric vantage point as well as supporting the work of the newly established Hyundai Tate Research Centre: Transnational.

These appointments form part of Tate’s ongoing strategy to explore multiple art histories from a global perspective. Over the past two decades, Tate’s collection, displays and exhibitions have focused on expanding beyond Europe and North America and have played an essential role in reassessing and reframing art historical narratives. In 2018/19, 348 works were added to Tate’s international collection, mapping the dialogue and exchange of ideas between artists working across the world. Acquisition highlights in recent years include Tarek Atoui’s The Reverse Collection 2016, Amar Kanwar’s The Lightning Testimonies 2007 and Otobong Nkanga’s Wetin You Go Do? 2015.

Tate also announced today the appointment of Valentina Ravaglia as Curator, Displays & International Art. Valentina will be working specifically on the collection display programme as part of the curatorial team at Tate Modern.

Frances Morris, Director, Tate Modern said: ‘We are delighted to appoint Nabila, Osei, Valentina and Devika as Curators at Tate Modern. Their significant experience and expertise will play an important part in expanding our knowledge of modern and contemporary art from Africa, South Asia, and the Middle East, furthering our ambition to present a truly international story of art through our programme and collection.’

The posts taken up by Nabila Abdel Nabi and Dr Devika Singh are supported by Hyundai Motor as part of their support of the Hyundai Tate Research Centre: Transnational.

Nabila Abdel Nabi, Curator, International Art
Nabila Abdel Nabi joins Tate after working as an Associate Curator at The Power Plant, Toronto, and prior to this as Gallery Manager (Exhibitions) in The Third Line, Dubai. Nabila has worked on solo exhibitions and facilitated new commissions by artists including Abbas Akhavan, Kader Attia, Omar Ba, Yto Barrada, Karla Black, Kapwani Kiwanga, Amalia Pica and Vivian Suter among others. She has curated the forthcoming Hajra Waheed exhibition Hold Everything Dear at The Power Plant, Toronto and was previously Art Editor at literary magazine The Point. Nabila holds an MA History of Art from The Courtauld Institute of Art. Nabila took up her post in April.

Osei Bonsu, Curator, International Art
Osei Bonsu is a curator, critic and art historian who has developed projects focused on transnational histories of art, collaborating with museums, galleries and private collections internationally. He curated the 10th edition of Satellites, The Economy of Living Things, 2017, an exhibition co-commissioned by Jeu de Paume and CAPC: Centre for Contemporary Art, Bordeaux, and has worked on a number of projects focusing on African art, including Pangaea II: New Art from Africa and Latin America, Saatchi Gallery, 2015, and 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair, 2013-14. Osei has contributed to exhibition catalogues and publications including ArtReview, New African and NKA Journal of Contemporary African Art, and was an acting contributing editor to frieze. He holds an MA History of Art from University College London. Osei took up his role this September.

Valentina Ravaglia, Curator, Displays & International Art
Since 2012, Valentina Ravaglia held the position of Assistant Curator at Tate Modern with a focus on collection displays, playing a vital role in the preparation of the 2015-16 rehang as well as the opening of the new Tate Modern in 2016. She has distinguished herself as a champion of the diversification of the displays, particularly in relation to gender and political activism, with rooms dedicated to Andrea Fraser, Women and Work, Judi Werthein, Feminism and Media, and Rebecca Horn. Valentina supported on the Hyundai Commission: Superflex One Two Three Swing! and is Assistant Curator on the upcoming Nam June Paik exhibition. She is currently undertaking a PhD from Birkbeck, University of London, and was previously awarded an MFA Curating from Goldsmiths. Valentina took up her post in August.

Dr Devika Singh, Curator, International Art
Devika Singh specialises in modern and contemporary art and architecture in South Asia and the global history of modernism. She has curated exhibitions including Planetary Planning, Dhaka Art Summit, 2018 and Gedney in India, CSMVS, Mumbai 2017. She has also curated the forthcoming exhibition Homelands: Art from Bangladesh, India and Pakistan at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge. Devika has written widely on modern and contemporary art for publications including Third Text, Art History, frieze and MARG. Devika holds an MA from The Courtauld Institute of Art and a PHD from the University of Cambridge and has held fellowships with DFK, Paris, and the Smuts Research Fellowship at the Centre of South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge. Devika took up her post in March.


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