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RAW Académie

Curator and Director of Programmes Marie Hélène Pereira presents RAW Material Company, a centre for art, knowledge, and society in Dakar, and talks about how the pedagogical programme RAW Académie was initiated and developed.


RAW Material Company is a centre for art, knowledge, and society in Dakar. It is an initiative involved with curatorial practice, artistic education, residencies, knowledge production, and archiving of theory and criticism on art, aiming to foster appreciation and growth of artistic and intellectual creativity in Africa. Marie Hélène talks about how the centre was developed in a Senegalese context, and how the pedagogical programme at RAW Académie was developed as a response to the growing need for spaces that nurture learning and unlearning. She points at how artistic education in Senegal has, in many ways, been modelled by a colonial context, that provokes a need for an update that allows RAW to align with the current situation and its urgencies. She presents a programme dedicated to a dynamic reflection on artistic research, curatorial practice, and critical writing and how it is organised around sessions. Each session is directed by a lead faculty with invited practitioners and thinkers in art, curating, and art criticism. So far 8 sessions have been organised since 2016 with faculty members and fellows from all over the world.

Marie Hélène Pereira

is a Curator and Director of Programs at RAW Material Company where she has organized exhibitions and related discursive programs including the participation of RAW to “We face forward: Art from West Africa Today” Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester; ICI Curatorial Hub at TEMP, New York; The 9th Shanghai Biennial, Shanghai; MARKER Art Dubai (2013). She co-curated Scattered Seeds in Cali-Colombia (2015-2017) and curated Battling to normalize freedom at Clarkhouse Initiative in Mumbai, India (2017). Pereira was a co-curator of Canine Wisdom for the Barking Dog – The Dog Done Gone Deaf. Exploring The Sonic Cosmologies of Halim El-Dabh with Dr Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung at the 13th edition of Dakar Biennale of Contemporary African art (2018). In 2021 she was selected as one of the recipients of the ICI Curatorial Research Fellowship – a Marian Goodman Gallery initiative conceived by artist Steve McQueen – in honor of the late Okwui Enwezor. Pereira is a member of Kader Attia’s curatorial team for the 12th Berlin Biennale in June 2022.



RAW Material Company website:

An interview with Marie Hélène Pereira, Director of Programs at RAW, by Nomusa Makhubu:

Magnus Ericson

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