An exhibition from Valerie Ebuwa as part of Artist Archive.
ValUE is a multi-layered project that challenges racism and ideas of ‘conventional’ beauty head on. The name comes from artist Valerie Uchechukwu Ebuwa’s initials, and also stands for the quality of the project’s content, in which she works to decode racial oppression through dance and visual art. Ebuwa’s work illustrates how the modern inability to contextualise black bodies in contemporary spaces repeatedly occurred throughout history, and offers a better perspective on old contexts. It asks us to hold a higher regard for the black female.
Ebuwa incorporates her own body in order to offer different perspectives on the black female image, which has largely been objectified, exotified and excluded from art history. This use of her body serves as a contribution to the demolition of contemporary hierarchy, patriarchy and racism, giving an all-round archetypal makeover by reversing subject-object interrelations between artist and model. Through illustrations, paintings, photographs and films in collaboration with other artists, ValUE exposes their perceptions and artistic interpretation of Ebuwa’s body and challenges the notion of ‘unfamiliarity’ of this subject.
This work explores the reclamation and ownership of primitivism, by allowing black women to curate and own their narratives – rather than settling on perceived notions and stereotypes of what the black female body is.
At the studios
ValUE is open for drop-in visits 10am – 6pm, Monday – Friday.
Thursday Evening Visits
ValUE can be visited on Thursday evenings until 9.30pm by booking ahead.
Accompanied by an online guide with commentary and audio description. Please bring a device and headphones if you want to access this. A limited number of devices will also be available from reception.
In Conversation with ValUE
About the Artist
Valerie Ebuwa is a dance artist, activist, writer and model from London. Amongst others she’s recently worked with; Clod Ensemble and Jamie xx. As a maker, she has choreographed and curated ValUE, a multi-layered project created in order to offer multiple perspectives on the black female image. Her writing has been featured in The Stage Magazine and is a regular contributor to I am Hip Hop magazine. Her work has been featured in Crack Magazine.
Access and Amenities at SDS
Siobhan Davies Studios is mostly accessible to wheelchair users, with lifts to all floors. There are two accessible parking spaces available on site which can be booked in advance. Blue Badge parking is also available nearby on West Square and Garden Row (for a full map visit the Southwark Council website). Our main door is not power assisted.
- Changing facilities*
- Communal showers*
- Toilets / wheelchair accessible toilets
- Kitchen: tea and coffee making, fridge, and microwave (not fully accessible)
* Our changing facilities and showers are not fully accessible. Our closest publicly available and fully accessible changing facility is at The Castle Centre, a leisure centre 0.3 miles away from the studios. You can find full details of their features here.