Hi, I’m Immaculata, an artist and researcher exploring the Nigerian left in the late 20th century, ideas about healing, and the power of the humanities.

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Biannual project update newsletter

Sometimes, like these days, I feel lost. Naturally. And the voices saying that the systems and structures I wish to dream up are impracticable or futile (for who?) are louder than the voices carrying inspiration and peace. David Wagoner’s poem ‘Lost’ revisited me this week offering itself as medicine:  

Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you

I’ve been listening to Fenton Johnson’s At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life, a meditation on accepting and celebrating one’s solitude and Krista Tipett’s Becoming Wise, an inquiry into the mystery of living.

- May 2024

portfolio highlights:

The Fire in My Memory, winner of 2023 Abebi Award in Afro-Nonfiction

Whom Did He Love?,  The Brooklyn Rail 
You Matter to Me,
short film (Rising Star award, S16 film festival 2023)
In the Dark in Nigeria, Popula
what poor electricity does to our minds

Face the Music, Wuruwuru/ Wax Poetics 
on re-constructed Nigerian identities in 1970s album covers

Copyright:  Immaculata Abba (2017 - 2024)
Web design: Immaculata Abba