Installation: 13 April  - 24 Apr 2022 

Open Wed-Sun. 12-6pm. 

Visiting CUBITT during Covid-19.

Read: Shenece Oretha in Conversation with Languid Hands

Ah So It Go, Ah No So It Go, Go So! is a listening space by London-based artist Shenece Oretha, curated by Languid Hands.

Shenece Oretha’s Ah So It Go, Ah No So It Go, Go So! offers a meditation on belonging, land, growing and grounding that reverberates through poetry, oral traditions and embodied knowing. The culmination of a year-long residency on an allotment in North London, and a development residency in Cubitt’s Studio One, Ah So It Go considers the poetry and complexity of the language of horticulture and cultivation in relation to Black diaspora, migration and culture. 

Cubitt’s gallery space is envisaged as a growhouse, lit by daylight and filtered with a hue reminiscent of the evening sky at the allotment. The slanted windows’ similarity to a greenhouse is emphasised to imagine the gallery as space for cultivation and growth. Speakers germinate and gesture throughout the space, inviting us to listen as they speak to us of the ground, the earth, the land. They sound out through the room on bespoke stands, resembling roots unfurling from sprouting seed, demonstrating the passage of time, weathered and allowed to rust in the elements over the duration of Oretha’s residency. Alongside them, growing containers in the form of Steel drum barrels contain seeds, sounds and words. 

The voices transmitted through the speakers commemorate Caribbean growers and literary figures, like Jamaica Kincaid, Grace Nichols, Dorothea Smartt and Valerie Bloom, among many others, who have created, protected and disseminated embodied understandings of being upon this land. Attentive to the significance of Black oral tradition as a method of distributing said knowledge(s), the work foregrounds listening as a compositional tool and leans in to hear their voices and pay tribute to their contribution, celebrating those who give language to grounded experiences of belonging and reconnection. 

The installation’s title, Ah So It Go, Ah No So It Go, Go So!, references patois terms, the use of which, in this instance, speak to the instructive and formative moments, gestures and familiar phrases that shape us and impart collective and ancestral wisdom.  

 

Download: Alotmeant a written response by Kondo Heller.pdf

Listen: Growing Our Wide Futures a sound offering and response by Kondo Heller

Read: Mbegu a poem by Kondo Keller.pdf

Shenece Oretha is a London based multidisciplinary artist sounding out the voice and sound’s mobilising potential. Through installation, performance, print, sculpture, sound, workshops and text she amplifies and celebrates listening and sound as an embodied and collective practice. Her work is attentive to not just the music, but the musicality of Black oral traditions, ceremony, spiritual practice and literature together with the intimate emotional, physical and communal resonance they generate.

Her solo exhibitions include at/Tribute, Institute Of Contemporary Art, London (2022), Called to Respond, Cell Project Space, London, (2020), TESTING GROUNDS, Cafe OTO Project Space, London, (2019). Group exhibitions include, SURVEY II, G39, Cardiff, Jerwood Arts, London and Site Gallery, Sheffield (2021-22), Cinders, Sinuous and Supple, Les Urbaines, Lausanne, Switzerland  (2019), and PRAISE N PAY IT/ PULL UP, COME INTO THE RISE, South London Gallery, London, (2018). Shenece was recently commissioned to make a new work in response to the sound archive at the British Library, Possibilities, Note On Play (2021). 

Ah So It Go, Ah No So It Go, Go So! is the final part of Languid Hands’ Cubitt Curatorial Fellowship Programme, No Real Closure, which has seen the duo curate four solo commissions from UK- based Black artists of Caribbean descent: R.I.P. Germain, Ajamu, Camara Taylor and Shenece Oretha, as well as the LIVE programme for Frieze London 2021, with new performances by Rebecca Bellantoni, Ebun Sodipo and Ashley Holmes, and the group screening programme REEL: AXIS, NOT POLES with Che Applewhaite, Kondo Heller, S*an D. Henry Smith, Dita Hashi and Kadeem Oak. 

No Real Closure is a platform for experimentation and development of black artistic practice across exhibitions, moving image, text, performance and public programming. Absent is the disproportionate emphasis on surface-level survey style programmes and representational focus: when we gather, we do so to manifest collaboration, exchange, dialogue, relationships – a sum greater than its individual parts.

Public Programme: 

SOWING SEEDS  
Friday 22nd April, 7:00-9:30pm

Sowing Seeds is a celebration commemorating Earth Day as part of Shenece Oretha's 'Ah So It Go, Ah No So It Go, Go So!' listening Space at Cubitt Gallery. Shenece invites poets, writers and performers to join her and extend her meditation on belonging, land, growing and grounding through poetry, oral traditions, performance and embodied knowing in tribute to Caribbean growers and literary figures.

EXHIBITION DOCUMENTATION