Kadiatou Diallo

*Learner | spacemaker | suspicious idealist

Kadiatou Diallo works as curator, facilitator and cultural practitioner between Basel (CH) and Cape Town (ZA).

She holds an MA in cognitive psychology (Universities of Maastricht, NL, and Stellenbosch, ZA) and a diploma in Fine Arts (Ruth Prowse School of Art, Cape Town, ZA).

She has worked as a researcher, curriculum developer and evaluator in the NGO sector (adult education and community healthcare) with the Adult Learning Network in Cape Town. Kadiatou has taught in diverse set of contexts, from pre – and primary school to adult and art education. She has developed and facilitated a wide range of creativity workshops, using applied arts and culture as tools for processes in other areas and disciplines (for universities, conferences, civil society organisations and youth groups). She has served on the executive committees of the Association of Visual Arts and on the Board of Greatmore Studios/ Thupelo Art Workshops in Cape Town and consulted on several international arts initiatives.

Between 2005 and 2011, Kadiatou worked as consultant for the Africa Centre in Cape Town: In 2005-2006, she facilitated a youth leadership programme, bringing together high school learners from historically racially segregated schools in the Stellenbosch area; in 2007, she managed the Africa Centre’s first international gathering of multi-disciplinary art practitioners, entitled En/Tangled Nations; she was the project manager and member of the selection committee for the inaugural Africa Centre Spier Contemporary 2007, a biennial national visual arts exhibition and awards series.

Since 2008, together with Dominique Malaquais, she co-directs SPARCK – Space for Pan-African Research Creation and Knowledge – a programme of experimental multi-disciplinary and multi-sited arts residencies, workshops, symposia, exhibitions, publications and performances.

In 2011/12 she was appointed director of Greatmore Studios, an artists studio and residency space in Woodstock, Cape Town. In 2013, she lead one of the groups of the inaugural Joule City Incubator programme and launched the experimental podcast series Artists on Africa

In 2016, she was awarded a curatorial residency at Atelier Mondial in Basel, Switzerland, where she curated “SCH”, a month-long programme of performative public encounters around notions of silence/ing at the Ausstellungsraum Klingental. She has since realized a number of curatorial projects in Switzerland. For the 7th European Conference on African Studies (ECAS) in 2017 in Basel, she curated the public space performance Festival A* Piece of Street and was chief editor for the once-off publication A*Magazine that was published on the same occasion. In 2018, she co-organized the CROSSROADS conference and corresponding artistic programme, a joint venture of the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia and the Swiss Agency for development and cooperation (SDC). Kadiatou pursues ongoing curatorial collaborations with Kaserne Basel. For the season opening 2018, she presented a series of intimate artistic encounters entitled Upfront, the following year a video installation showcasing titled Heterotopic Planetarium, showcasing possible worlds imagined by an international group of women artists. In 2020, Kadiatou will moderate a series of performative talks entitled KIN-SHIP-ING.

Kadiatou continues to teach and facilitate workshops and seminars, among other at the Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz (FHNW) with a focus on critical diversity literacy and as a faculty member of the MA in Public Spheres (MAPS) programme at the édhéa (école de design et haute école d’art) in Sierre. Since 2019, she also works (and teaches) as a research associate for the Aesthetics from the Margins project at the Centre for African Studies of the University of Basel, where she pursues her interest in artistic practice as approach to decoloniality.