Cairo Clarke is a curator and writer based in London. Her work is informed by slowness, it centers forms of knowledge production and dissemination that slip between the cracks, are formed on unstable ground and take on multiple temporalities. Supporting strands of theorising taking place in autonomous spaces and holding space for the mess.
Cairo has worked closely with artists to develop and share instances of work across film, performance, printed matter and events as well as sharing self-led curatorial projects across numerous sites including Pompeii Commitment: Archeological Matters, Deptford X and LUX. In 2019 she launched SITE, a publication and curatorial project exploring alternative encounters with artist practice and the dissemination of research. Cairo is the 2020/21 Curatorial Fellow at LUX. Previously she was a member of The Black Curriculum, and continues to work in educational spaces.
For Archipelagos in Reverse Research Network public programme, her research explores rhythm, its relationship to the layering of time, memory, poetic knowledge production and dissemination. She explores the legacy of rhythm in the Caribbean and its diaspora as a coded, creative tool for survival, social protest and futurity across artistic practices, and navigating our contemporary lives, imbued by a rumbling of ancestral knowledge – the known unknowns… How do these notions become pedagogical praxis in their own right? Thinking about contemporary artists as well as the legacies of calypso, carnival, sound systems, dub poetry, independent publishing, pirate radio in the UK and the home. How are these manifestations of Caribbean culture rooted in anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist and anti-capitalist sentiments? Intrinsic to this research is exploration of seas and oceans, their relationships to rhythm, waves, movement, migration and the shared qualities of the sonic as rhizomatic and generative. Exploring both Caribbean and South Asian heritage, Clarke also looks at the layered nature of time, critically engaging with their entangled colonial histories and solidarities formed later in Britain and what has come of that relationship.