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Antawan Byrd

Antawan Byrd

Antawan Byrd is associate curator, Photography and Media, at the Art Institute of Chicago. Since joining the museum in 2017, he has contributed to the exhibition Volta Photo: Starring Sanlé Sory and the People of Bobo-Dioulasso in the Small but Musically Mighty Country of Burkina Faso (2018) and curated and co-edited the catalogue for The People Shall Govern! Medu Art Ensemble and the Anti-Apartheid Poster (2019) with Felicia Mings. He recently curated Mimi Cherono Ng’ok: Closer to the Earth, Closer to My Own Body, the first solo presentation in the United States of the Kenyan-born photographer.

Antawan specializes in modern and contemporary art of Africa and the African diaspora with a particular focus on histories of photography, sound, urbanism, and popular culture. In addition to his role at the museum, he serves as assistant professor of art history at Northwestern University. He received the Award for Curatorial Excellence from the Arts Council of the African Studies Association in 2017, and his research has been supported by an Andrew Mellon-CLIR fellowship, a Mellon-COSI fellowship, and a Fulbright fellowship.

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