A three-way collaboration
Queercircle is a newly-opened hub for LGBTQ+ arts and culture in London – the first of its kind. Kudzanai-Violet Hwami and Queercircle go way back. A painting by Hwami appeared in Queercircle's first ever exhibition, and the artist now sits on the organisation's board of trustees. Proceeds from our collaboration, Kudzi, will be used to support the future programming of the space.
To mark the moment, a print from the edition will be on view at Queercircle until October 2nd alongside a group show of more than 50 young artists staged by Queer Youth Art Collective.
At 26 years old, Zimbabwean painter Kudzanai-Violet Hwami became the youngest artist to ever show at the Venice Biennale.
James Baldwin famously said you think your pain and heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read.Kudzanai-Violet Hwami
Kudzi will be hung in the Queercircle reading room – a space for respite, contemplation and learning. With this in mind, we invited Hwami to compile a selection of literature to accompany her print. From fairytales by Diriye Osman to stills from Isaac Julien’s cinematic masterpiece, Langston, the books will be a permanent addition to the Queercircle library.
Fairytales for Lost Children, Diriye Osman
Hairdresser of Harare, Tendai Huchu
You Have to be Gay to Know God, Siya Khumalo
Boy-Wives and Female Husbands, Stephen O. Murray
Faces and Phases, Zanele Muholi
Looking for Langston, Isaac Julien
I chose these books because reading and studying these works not only validated my experience as a queer person, but as a Black queer person. I saw myself reflected in the storytelling, the language and the imagery. It helped me find space in myself but also helped me find a community of other queer people who could relate to these same experiences. These books have moved me , kept me company and – ultimately – taught me that i am not alone in this world.Kudzanai-Violet Hwami
To expand access to the artwork, Queercircle are holding a lottery. For £10, entrants will have the chance to win an artist's proof of Kudzi. Subscribe to the Queercircle mailing list to find out more and enter.
Kudzi started as a digital collage of the artist’s cousin. Printed, painted on and then faithfully recreated in 17 silkscreen layers. To complete a collaborative process with numerous fruitful iterations, 15 prints from the edition of 50 have been hand-finished by the artist in her London studio.