Work done outside of Studio Styles (2016-2023)



Recognitions & Grants:

2023                        Abebi Afro-Nonfiction Award (for The Fire in My Memory)
2023                        Rising Star Award, S16 Film Festival (for You Matter to Me)
2023                        Wasafiri life writing prize longlist  (for The Fire in My Memory)
2023                        Best of 2022 Economics Writing, The Republic Journal (for essay on Africapitalism)
2021                        Artist grant, under the ‘Creating Joy: Art, Refusal and the Worlding of Black Lives’ project (to make You Matter to me)




Conference Presentations:

  • Aug 2021                               ‘Politics of control and consumption of colonial commodities: guns and alcohol in Southern Nigeria (1890- 1945),’ paper presented at the Institute of Historical Research (IHR London) Graduate Conference

  • Jan 2019                               ‘Economic nationalism and masculinities in late colonial Nigeria,’ the only paper presented by an undergrad at Africa and World War II conference (funded by the British Academy), Queen Mary University of London



Workshops facilitated:




Academic Publications:

                        Access my paper directly through this link.




Selected Photo Publications:

2022                        Education of the Tumblr Girl-now-Artist (self-portraits, digital collage), HAPAX Issue 3
2022                        Black Women Photographers on International Women’s Day, The Guardian (print)
2019                        In The Hands of God We Rendezvous, Saraba Mag
2017                        Way of Seeing, Saraba Mag



Group Exhibitions:

2022                      Cosmos of Space, of Place and Time (Nlele Institute), Recontres de Bamako
2021                       The Wrong Biennale (curated by olakiitan adeola, ftbc)
2018                       Off the Track festival, Battersea Arts Centre
2018                       QM Visual Arts Collective show, Hundred Years Gallery



Fellowships, Workshops & Residencies:

2024                        Zeitz MOCAA x University of Western Cape museum fellowship (resigned before program end)
2023                        Abebi Award Writing Residency, Lagos
2023                        New York Portfolio Review 
2023                        The Nlele Institute, Professional Development Workshop, Lagos 
2022-2023           Shared Heritage Africa (African modernism) architecture fellowship
2022-2023           SBMEN and Goethe-Institut Nigeria Art Writing and Criticism Workshop

2022                        Writer-in-Residence at Library of Africa and the African Diaspora, Accra
2022                        Lagos Photo Festival x Reuters Portfolio Review (best portfolio prize)

2021                        African Arguments Pilot Journalism Fellowship
2021                        Tampered Press Workshop with Lesley Nneka Arimah and Mamle Kabu
2021                        The Nlele Institute Portfolio Review
2021                        Introduction to Photographic Histories, The Photographers’ Gallery

2020                       SBMEN Creative Writing Workshop
2020                       For Creative Girls, Business Development mentorship with Hallie Haller

2018                        Arvon Foundation writers retreat with Malika Booker and Polar Bear
2018                        Photo Scratch (portfolio review/exhibition)

2017                        Apples and Snakes Writing Room with Roger Robinson
2017                        Writivism Emerging Writers program
2017                        Digital Photography Summer school, University of the Arts London

2016                        Youth Editorial Program at the Royal African Society’s Africa Writes




Previous Editorial Jobs:

2021 - 2023         Freelance journalist (self-employed)
July-Sept ‘22       Senior Editor at Tech Cabal 
2021 - 2022        Contributing writer for AMAKA Studio (writing about African women in the business of agriculture, art, tech & more)
2021                        Inaugural journalism fellow at African Arguments





Academic background:  

BA  History and Comparative Literature, QM University of London

  • history dissertation on value and anti-colonial resistance in the use of firearms and liquor in southern Nigeria 1890-1969
  • literature dissertation on writing tyranny on the body in Kafka’s ‘In the Penal Colony’ and Uzoma’s ‘Quasi School of Taught’



MSt Global and Imperial History, University of Oxford

  • dissertation on the economic lives and thought of Kumasi market women 1970-1995
  • long essay on time, temporality and anti-colonial movements in Nigeria 1900-1945


Proud member of:

Indigenous Photograph collective
Black Women Photographers
African Photo-Journalism Database, World Press Photo






*the photograph in the background was taken in 1911 by N. W. Thomas, the first ‘Government Anthropologist’ for the British Colonial Office in present-day Anambra State (Enugu was once part of Anambra State).

I wrote about the photograph for The Brooklyn Rail here



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