Bristol artist to take over city’s billboards and advertising spaces for the weekend

Work from Bristol artist Asmaa Jama will appear on billboards across the city for one weekendWork from Bristol artist Asmaa Jama will appear on billboards across the city for one weekend
Work from Bristol artist Asmaa Jama will appear on billboards across the city for one weekend | Asmaa Jama
The work will be presented on 20 billboard and poster spaces located in prominent sites across the city

Billboard and advertising spaces across the city will be taken over by Bristol-based multi-disciplinary artist, filmmaker and writer Asmaa Jama for one weekend.

Curated by Zarina Rossheart, the project is for the final instalment in BuildHollywood’s first major curatorial and artist commission, All About Love, and champions artists who are either born in those cities or live and work there.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The commissions take inspiration from a quote from All About Love, the groundbreaking book by cultural critic, feminist theorist and author bell hooks.

Bristol will host the final edition of the All About Love project, following city-wide billboard takeovers in Birmingham, Brighton, Glasgow and Manchester over the summer.

Asmaa Jama’s All About Love commission builds on from their film ‘Except this time nothing returns from the ashes’ (2022) which was shot in Addis Ababa in collaboration with Gouled Ahmed. Combining poetry and music, the film explores how national canons are constructed and can be corrupted.

The work is a documentation of the artist’s interactions with their family’s photographic collections and archives, placing emphasis on self-portraiture and its ability to combat erasure. The film is commissioned by Spike Island in Bristol and is on view at the gallery until September 10.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The work for All About Love is a selection of photographic stills from the film captioned with fragments of poetic text. The images feature scenes where the characters face the camera and question the viewer’s gaze and complicity in their erasure and annihilation.

Jama is interested in the possibility of disseminating the film in other formats, as well as the possibility of capturing the story in stills, paying homage to the idea of photography and self-portraiture and the ways communities have archived themselves and their stories.

The work will be presented on 20 billboard and poster spaces located in prominent sites across the city including Temple Gate, West Street, Old Market Roundabout and Kingsland Road. The project runs from September 7-10.

Asmaa Jama’s artwork Except This Time Nothing Comes Back From The AshesAsmaa Jama’s artwork Except This Time Nothing Comes Back From The Ashes
Asmaa Jama’s artwork Except This Time Nothing Comes Back From The Ashes | Asmaa Jama and Gouled Ahmed

On September 9 at 1pm, Asmaa Jama will also present an outdoor public reading of the poetic text from ‘Except this time nothing returns from the ashes’ at West Street. They will be joined by a guest collaborator okcandice, a writer, artist-curator and musician based between Birmingham and Berlin.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The performance will be followed by a group walk with the artist around the multiple sites in the local area.

Asmaa Jama said: “All About Love is a life-giving text, it’s a touchstone I and my community often go back to. We cannot be in a loveless world. How can we cultivate more care, more attention and more tenderness?

“This work, is in fact, for the communities that are always discarded. The people and places, considered ruins and past saving. I’m interested in what happens to them after, the ways they gather and recreate worlds.

“I think love is a contaminating force that helps us resist our erasures and our annihilation. In Bristol, the places I love are the places that people have resisted their erasures, like St. Paul’s, Easton and Barton Hill. Where the communities gather, and salvage themselves.”

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.