Request for Reference

2019

Rosa-Johan Uddoh
Rosa-Johan Uddoh is an artist working towards radical self-love, inspired by Black feminist practice and writing. Through performance, ceramics and sound, she explores an infatuation with places, objects or celebrities in British popular culture and the effects of these on self-formation. In her works, Uddoh questions the limits of representation, attempting to develop an understanding of performances of race and Blackness in a global context. Importantly, she questions the role Black people had historically in the construction and deconstruction of national identities, from the broadcasters Moira Stuart and Una Marson to Meghan Markle. Request for Reference, 2019, is a silent video work exploring the figure of Una Marson, a Jamaican feminist, activist and writer and the first Black broadcaster to be employed by the BBC, for whom she worked during the Second World War. The work documents Marson’s request for a reference letter for her time as a producer at the BBC, which she sent years after her employers aided her forced removal to Jamaica. Uddoh studied Marson’s staff file at the BBC Written Archives and couples text from this with footage from a BBC propaganda video that Marson appeared in during the War.
  • Artwork Details: running time: 5 minutes 34seconds
  • Edition: 1 of 2 + 1 AP
  • Material description: Digital film
  • Credit line: © the artist. Image courtesy of the artist
  • Theme: Undefined
  • Medium: Film and Audio Visual
  • Accession number: ACC8/2020
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