Onyeka Igwe lives and works in London. Her works often incorporate video, sound, dance and voice-over narrations. A So-Called Archive consists of footage shot in two different colonial archive buildings – one in Lagos, Nigeria, and one in Bristol, United Kingdom. Onyeka Igwe showcases a forensic interest in the images of the British colonial past and its institutions, as well as its visible traces throughout modern day Britain.
The building filmed in Lagos used to house the former Nigerian Film Unit, part of the so-called Colonial Film Unit (1932–1955) and was once one of the very first outposts of the British visual propaganda. Now it stands empty, hollowed out of its materials. The second building filmed in Bristol is the former Empire and Commonwealth Museum (2002–2009) and used to house photography, film and object collections from across the former British empire. Allegation reported that the museum was illegally selling parts of its collections. It closed its doors to the public in 2009 and remains empty since.
The KW Production Series is a project dedicated to the moving image, initiated in 2018 by the KW Institute for Contemporary Art in collaboration with OUTSET Germany_Switzerland and the Julia Stoschek Collection, and produced by Mason Leaver-Yap, KW’s Associate Curator. The presentation at Museum Abteiberg is curated by Haris Giannouras, Assistant Curator at Museum Abteiberg.