In Conversation with Kordae Jatafa Henry

In Conversation with Kordae Jatafa Henry

Posted in Art Market

Kordae Jatafa Henry is a visual artist and filmmaker working at the frontier of real and virtual to explore new worlds through mythology and Black culture. He reflects on alternate futures by combining fragments of these worlds with various human interactions. His storytelling finds its roots in Afrofuturism with inspiration from various forms including the paintings of Kerry James Marshall, the music of Bobby Digital, and the writings of Octavia Butler.

Raised by a Jamaican mother and British father in Washington DC, Henry chose to study architecture, which took him to Los Angeles for his postgraduate studies where he found himself increasingly drawn to other mediums. “I enjoyed building spaces but the idea of telling stories through spaces was more interesting to me,” he says. “I’m fascinating by film and the ability it gives you to reimagine tangible things while working with traditional tools.” Inspired by the exploitative mineral trade in Africa, which is mined in Congo-Kinshasa and then shipped to China to be turned into batteries for mobile phones, Henry created a short film “Earth Mother, Sky Father: 2030”.

In his short film, Henry looked at the unethical exploitation of Congo-Kinshasa’s mineral resources through the creation of a utopian future where slavery, colonialism, and corruption don’t exist. People from this fictional world have chosen to protect their wealth from deep within the ground. “The film looks at a deeper level of mythology through objects, through dance, through music. It challenges the viewer to look beyond the post-apocalyptic in the white male gaze but instead begins to explore new notions of rituals through the musicality that black bodies possess all over the world,” says Henry.


Posted in Art Market  |  September 19, 2020