Skip to main content

LADA announces first Black Artist in Residence

LADA is delighted to announce that the first Black Artist in Residence is Madinah Farhannah Thompson.

Launched in March 2023, the Study Room Residencies for Black Scholars and Artists aim to expand LADA’s Study Room resources and introduce our audiences and communities to artists and scholars from the Global Majority.

About Madinah Farhannah Thompson

Madinah Farhannah Thompson is a visual artist and writer, whose work investigates Black British experiences. She is particularly enraged by the misrepresentation of the Black female body and the projections which are placed on individuals – namely the extreme polarities imposed on Black women, where they are expected to be both a hyper-visible Jezebel and the invisible mammy figure at one time. Her work is research and text led and incorporates poetry, performance, memory and film.

Most recently she has been examining how Black people exist in rural spaces in the UK and how people are often alienated or isolated when they exist in these environments. She grew up in Norfolk and is concerned with how you can feel attached to a land that in turn rejects you. This work has been profiled by Hibaq Farah in a recent Guardian article. Within her performances she often places herself as an object, to consider ideas of fetishisation. What does it mean, on a day-to-day basis, to exist within a context of objectification?

Madinah’s work often looks at intergenerational healing for example her work Myrene where she plaited a constellation of materials, rubbing them with fragrant caster oil accompanied by an audio recording of a conversation between her father and her grandmother. This was an investigation into actions which are fundamental to the nurturing of Black women, such as sitting between a maternal figures knees and having your hair cainrowed, or having your skin creamed after a bath. These actions are repeated infinitesimally during Black peoples lives, connecting us to our ancestry and continuing legacy.

Her current project Call When You Reach is made up of performance, collage and film and investigates the impact of trauma and how this leads to a disconnection from the physical body. Madinah is determined through her work to heal herself and others. She embraces the slur of the angry Black woman and uses her practice to try and navigate a world that does not make space for her.

Madinah studied at The Cass School of Art receiving the Owen Riley prize for best in show for her BA final show performance No Black Girls Sorry. She completed her MA at Goldsmiths University where her final show film Saliva & Tears/ Underneath You went on to win the 2020 Ingram Collection Young Contemporary Talent Prize. Madinah has had residencies at the Venice Biennale, Hestercombe House and Gardens and the Cob x Plop residency in London. She has exhibited and performed at The Mall Galleries, Wellcome Collection and Camden People’s Theatre. She has been published in Social Work?: Open, Shades of Noir and on the British Council Website and her work has been featured in The Guardian and Art Monthly.

Find out more about Madinah here, or on her Instagram, here.

Latest news

Study Room Residencies for Black Scholars and Artists (now closed)

9 March 2023

Two 6 month Study Room residencies for Black scholars and artists

Read more

Announcing Mary Osborn as New Director of LADA

17 July 2024

The Board of Trustees are delighted to announce the appointment of Mary Osborn

Read more

LADA re-enters ACE’s National Portfolio

16 October 2023

The Live Art Development Agency is delighted to announce that we have re-entered Arts Council England’s National Portfolio.

Read more

A statement from LADA’s Interim Artistic Director, Ria Righteous

16 October 2023

Interim Director, Ria Righteous, provides a statement on the her current position with LADA and aims for the organisation’s future.

Read more

Announcing The New Board of The Live Art Development Agency

11 September 2023

With the help and support of LADA patrons, the former board of directors has now been replaced by a completely new board as of July 2023.

Read more

Temporary closure of the Study Room throughout August

9 August 2023

We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this closure may cause throughout the month of August.

Read more