Karimah Ashadu, born 1985 in London, studied Fine Art and History of Art and Architecture at the University of Reading School of Arts in Berkshire, UK. She later completed her master’s in Spatial Design at Chelsea College of Art and Design in London. From 2014 to 2016 she was a fellow at De Ateliers in Amsterdam. She has received prizes at the Ann Arbor Film Festival, Euro Video, and Split Film Festival and is the winner of the 2018-20 Edith Breckwoldt Fellowship at Künstlerhaus FRISE, Hamburg. She is a nominee for the Han Nefkens Foundation-Arco Madrid Video Art Production Award 2019.
Karimah Ashadu’s video works examine the topic of labour. The protagonists of her films are often shown within the socioeconomic context of Nigeria: workers in a sawmill on the Lagos State Lagoon, farmers extracting palm oil, or boxers in Nigeria’s slums. Her films frequently focus on male-dominated structures that have developed independently and in parallel to the political conditions in the country. In her works, the artist weaves documentary elements with fiction and draws on unconventional technical means to challenge the perception of the viewer.