SOAS: A History Untold

SOAS, May 21, 2021

SOAS alumnus and England International Rugby player Maro Itoje has opened his first exhibition in partnership with curator Lisa Anderson at the Signature African Art Gallery. 

‘A History Untold’ features new work by six African and Diaspora artists. These works celebrate Black history and the contributions Black figures have made to civilisation and society across the centuries. From the origins of mathematics to jazz, the exhibition reveals lesser-known stories and addresses the oversimplified history of colonialism in the current system through a post-colonial lens. 

A strong advocate for education and patron of The Black Curriculum, the exhibition was conceptualised by Itoje and inspired by his personal experience of schooling on Black history.  

At the opening night of the exhibition on Wednesday 19 May, fellow SOAS alumnus, Professor of Practice, and Director of V&A East, Dr Gus Casely-Hayford was in conversation with Maro to introduce the exhibition.  

Fellow SOAS alumni David Lammy MP and Lavinya Stennett, Founder of Black Curriculum, were also in attendance alongside Deputy Director Claire Ozanne and Philanthropy Manager, Kathryn Moore.  

On Monday 7 June, Dr Amina Yaqin and Dr Meera Sabaratnam will be giving a talk about the SOAS Decolonising Group, explaining their aim to interrogate and transform the institutional, structural and epistemological legacies of colonialism, specifically where these produce injustices within higher education and barriers to knowledge and understanding. 

'A History Untold' aims to educate audiences and invites viewers to consider the history they have been taught. It seeks to inspire change in the curriculum and hope in the liberatory force of education.

Signature African Art will donate 15% of the proceeds generated from ‘A History Untold’ to local and national social/community projects.